Thought for Shabbat
It is that time of the year when we in the Midwest are aware that there may be time when we will either get a notice on our phone, on TV, or hear the siren and we know that we will have to head to a safe area due to severe weather. It is a part of living in this part of the country, and it seems a small price to pay to avoid volcanoes, earthquakes and hurricanes.
This week, many Israelis were forced to seek shelter over and over but for a different reason; the threat was not severe weather but rather missiles launched from Gaza. Although this happened far away, I have many Facebook friends who live in Israel for whom this was a frightening reality. I do not know how one ever can get used to the mad dash to the shelters on a regular basis—sometimes after a long stretch of quiet.
And then, yesterday (after Israeli Memorial Day on Wednesday), the celebrations began for Yom Ha’atzma’ut. Having been in Israel on Independence Day several times, I know how much fun it can be. It is a day to reflect on the many accomplishments of the Jewish State as well as the sacrifices that made it all possible.
How Israelis are able to regulate their emotions from fear of missiles to the elation of the reality of Eretz Yisrael under Jewish sovereignty again after nearly 2000 years? It takes a certain kind of special to do it, I guess.
This Shabbat let us give thanks for the many blessings that the State of Israel has brought. Let us also pray and work for the peace and well-being of all of Israel’s inhabitants. Next year, may there be no reason to fear…only reasons to celebrate!