Shabbat shalom from Israel! Can I just share a few things with you today?
The past few months have been very intense. Before October 7th, we had been sending out a Tuesday prayer letter every week, but then our world was turned upside down. I do need prayer... and so does my dear wife. In addition to doing whatever we can to stand with our soldiers, I have another full-time job with Shelanu, and I am in school working on my doctorate. Sometimes, I sit down to do my work, and I cannot get my mind off of the other things happening in this world. I would certainly appreciate some prayer!
Elana has been serving her 84-year-old mother tirelessly. I have no doubt that heaven is taking notice of how Elana has persevered in a very difficult situation. Getting help from the government for her ailing mom is a full-time job with massive red tape. Right now, we are trying to get a full-time caregiver (pray!). Not only is it expensive, but after the war began many caregivers returned home. Most of them are from the Philippines or Thailand. The demand is high, and the supply is low.
So please pray for Elana to have the needed grace and strength and also that we would find the right caregiver who will have the patience and compassion to take care of dear Esther.
This week, we had several different requests from soldiers. So far, we have never said no to a need. I can only continue to do this as our partners are generous. And you have been! Every day, I tell people how amazing and generous you guys have been. So, let me just share the needs that are before us.
There is a unit of 20 soldiers in the north that has asked for winter combat boots. It is getting really cold in the north, and it can even snow. These are the fellows fighting Hezbollah and standing between our northern border and the demonic terrorists that want to destroy Israel. It is shocking to me that these have not been provided to them already by the IDF. The shoes have already been put aside for them by the vendor. They just needed to be paid for … and we committed to that yesterday.
$5564.00 for 20 pairs
We want to buy 20 pairs of these special boots for soldiers fighting Hezbollah on the Lebanese border! Let’s stand with them!
One of the battalions we have been working with, Battalion 6303, Is getting some R&R. They asked us for $20,000 to host a yom gibbush (a unity-building fun day) at the Dead Sea. There are roughly 120 soldiers. We don’t just plan to feed them but also make sure that they get refreshed and restored before they go back. Our media team is coming, so we can send you some footage!
This is Noam. He is our contact with Battalion 6303. Please pray for him, as he is in Khan Yunis right now (In Gaza).
We have been asked to supply surveillance drones to a unit in the north. An IDF Golani Brigade reserve infantry unit, now defending Israel’s northern border with Lebanon, is in urgent need of specialized drones to carry out reconnaissance flights over hostile territory to clear it of explosives prior to entry. Today, the troops must physically probe the area to search for explosives, a highly dangerous, hazardous undertaking. The use of military drones to inspect the area is a lifesaving endeavor that will significantly improve the defense and attack capabilities of the IDF. Presently, the IDF does not supply these critically needed drones.
The thermal drones will save Israeli lives, but they're not cheap. Each one costs about $16,000. They need four of them, and we have committed to buying at least one. Who knows, maybe someone will want to buy all four! We ask for your urgent assistance in purchasing four Autel Evo Max 4T/N drones (approved by the IDF) at a cost of $16,631 (34,188 IL) per drone.
Please donate generously to the Emergency Alignment of International Aid (RA) IBAN IL27-0205-6700-0000-0216-112 Swift: MIZBILITXXX Please indicate: For Urgent Drone Purchase.
Your help at this time is not only saving Israeli lives, but you are showing these soldiers exactly what Jesus is like! After 2000 years of Christian anti-Semitism, they are finally seeing the true face of the Messiah.
Israel is blooming!
Despite the war, Israel is blooming. Yesterday, Elana and I took a break from everything and went hiking in the north. Of course, we couldn't go too far north because of the bombing from Hezbollah in Lebanon. But we found two short hikes with lots of beautiful flowers.
Rechefot are cyclamens, and they bloom around this time of year. Also, the beautiful red flowers are called calani’ot or anemones in English. Below are some photos.
On our second hike, there was a dog behind the fence as we arrived. Suddenly, he appeared in front of us and led us on a 30-minute hike. He stayed with us until the very end.
Normally, we would be getting ready for our March tour right now. It's very sad that we will not be able to lead any tours for a while. It is absolutely one of our favorite things to do in the world. We love to take people around this amazing country and open up the Bible, watching it come to life. Hopefully, we will be able to do that again in the future. If not, maybe I can get a job as a tour guide in the Messianic Age!