Hello dear friends, it’s me, Elana. I thought you might want to hear about some of the experiences with the soldiers over the past month.
As many of you know, a young soldier that we met a few weeks ago, Oded, was seriously injured. I’ve been going to the hospital regularly to visit him and to be with his mother.
Today, I brought the soldiers some food for Shabbat in the hospital. It’s not just Oded there now but there are a total of six injured soldiers in the hospital. The crazy thing for us is that we lived in Tel Aviv all these years and never expected to be here in the South. But now, as Providence would have it, we are just a five-minute drive from the hospital where they are bringing the injured soldiers.
An army band came today playing guitar, violin, clarinet, and flutes. They were singing traditional Jewish songs and encouraging the morale of the injured soldiers.
It was very emotional for me. Suddenly, you see them going healthy into the battleground and now they’re coming back to the hospital injured, completely dependent on others to take care of them. A week ago, they were fighting, and now they are struggling with the most basic issues of life. And they are so young! They’re mostly all in their early 20s, with their whole lives ahead of them.
I was singing with them and crying at the same time. It was so emotional.
This war came completely unexpected. The emotions of the nation are all over the place. There are giant posters in every city of the faces of those who have been taken hostage to Gaza. Just a few months ago, the nation was completely divided over this issue of changing the Supreme Court. Now, people are completely united, the left and the right, the secular and the religious. It’s hard to look for a silver lining in something so tragic, but after a year of such division, it is a blessing to be working together as one people. The Bible tells us that God commands his blessing on unity in Psalm 133.
As we enter into the Sabbath, would you agree with me in praying a blessing on all the soldiers of Israel? Pray for their mothers, who are terrified. Pray that God would be with them and protect them. The casualties have been amazingly low for the type of operation that our troops have been involved in. But even a small number is heartbreaking. God bless you, and thank you so much for standing with these young men and women.
PS. Because of your gifts, on Sunday, Ron and I will be going into the area near Gaza to deliver special equipment for a group of elite soldiers. Please keep us in prayer, and we will continue to pray for you.