Newsletter May-June

“Lord God, there is nothing too hard for you”
(Jeremiah 32:17)
“ Who can be saved? ...with God, all things are possible”
(Matthew 19:26)

Quite a lot happened in our congregation, in Israel and around the world in the last few weeks.

Beit ha Kerem hosted a three day conference, on the theme “Israel and the end of times“, to coincide with Yom HaAmtzaut, our Independence Day. Believers from Ukraine and different parts of Israel joined us and several speakers shared about different aspects of the theme. Oleg emphasized the need for all of us to be involved in our society and to proclaim the truth of the Gospel; he gave us the example of believers who visit and pray with Ukrainian soldiers. Boris shared that, no matter whether our work for the Kingdom is not seen and may even be considered as a waste of time in the eyes of the world, still it is the right investment and God knows it and values it. Miki from Rishon le Tsion pointed at the story of Queen Esther and encouraged us to refuse complacency and to fight by interceding for the salvation of our fellow Jews in Israel and in the diaspora. Andreas from Germany encouraged us not to be afraid when we read what will happen at the end of times but to focus on what God is expecting from us as He was expecting from Israel, mainly obedience and awareness of God living in us; Andreas called us to be totally dedicated to Yeshua as He totally gave Himself to us, and also to be prepared to leave our comfort zone as Yeshua did.

In a very powerful and moving way Andreas and his family asked Miki, whose family was murdered during the Holocaust, for his forgiveness.

On June, 4th we were invited to join the Carmel Congregation to celebrate their 25th anniversary. It was a privilege to be a part of such a meaningful event. Some of us used to belong to that congregation and we share with them the same vision of restoring God’s altar of worship and of the return of the fathers' hearts to their children, as it is written about Elijah in Malachi 5:5-6. David Davis, who was the senior pastor and founder of the congregation, passed his leadership to Daniel Sayag, whom he had prepared for the task along many years of discipleship.

On Shavuot day we had a congregation outing in the Hanita forest, near the Northern border of the country. Some of us kindly prepared a barbecue while David and Lena organised different kinds of games. There was no competition but we were all in one big team working together for the success of the mission. Well, there were some spiritual truths to be learnt from the games:

  • it is through unity among ourselves, using and recognizing the uniqueness of each team member, and obedience to the one whom we choose as the leader that we accomplish what otherwise seems an impossible mission;
  • together we can accomplish a task that each individual cannot succeed in doing by himself;
  • no matter what the circumstances are, it is by putting our trust in Him and in our brethren that the work of the Kingdom will be accomplished.

One of the games was about letting ourselves fall backwards from a rather high place in the hands of our brethren… One needs a lot of trust to do that!

Many non believers joined our party and were touched by the atmosphere of love, kindness and honesty that they experienced in our midst.

The entire world is shaken by political uncertainty and disturbing occurrences but unusual events are also taking place in the hot and humid Israeli Summer.

On Friday June 24th the LGBT community held their parade in the city of Haifa and the mayor endorsed it. Some believers remembered that the last terrorist attack in Tel Aviv occurred just a few days after the same type of parade took place there. They sensed that God removed His protection on the city after such an abomination was endorsed by the local authorities, while others quoted Yeshua’s words in Luke 13:1-5: don’t think that these people (here it would be the inhabitants of Tel Aviv) were worst sinners… we all have sinned and we need to repent!

This last week more terrorist attacks brought with them their death toll and the country is in mourning.

We continue to pray for the security of Israel and for those who protect us, but above all we pray that the people will turn back to God’s standards and receive Yeshua as their Saviour.

The same week a new battalion composed of Muslims Bedouins and Arab Christians swore allegiance to the Israeli army and country. Often these brave soldiers are ostracised by their own community and sometimes they are not accepted even by Jewish Israeli soldiers.

Right now a young Jewish man from our congregation and a Arab Christian cousin of one of our brothers are serving in Hebron.

These brave and loyal young men and women need our prayers: we bring them to God’s presence and we proclaim His protection and blessings upon them.

Finally we would appreciate your prayers:

  • for the release of the gifts and calling evident among many of the members of our congregation. Some times wrong reactions and attitudes from past wounds are hindering the growth to maturity for the work in the Kingdom;
  • for our landlord who is still negotiating with the owner of the second half of the floor where we have our main meetings;
  • for Ira, who had neuro surgery and is back to her regular life, and Sveta who had the liver transplant but seems to recover at a much slower pace;
  • for the non believers, not yet!, who attended the outing in the Hanita forest.

Thank again for your prayers and support.

For His Kingdom,

Alek and Lena, and the Beit ha Kerem team.