Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Playing War

August in Israel is the month of no school, no camps, and no day care. It’s a month when grandparents are often called upon to help entertain grandchildren. So I found myself with my young granddaughter on the first day of the newest ceasefire. I spent part of our time sharing stories of family history which she enjoyed and then we decided to play some card games. Eventually we began playing War.

I guess War is a good way to teach children the concept of greater and lesser than. To me, though, it was always a mindless game. As a child I even remember on boring afternoons being driven to play the game by myself, my right hand against my left.  I shared that memory with my granddaughter and she smiled. 

Meanwhile I tried to make our game as exciting as possible. I groaned when I lost a king, I shrugged if it was a two, and I practically clapped my hands when I saved my joker. Suddenly though, a simile came to mind. In the Israeli army the twos are no less valuable than the jokers. Sometimes they are even more precious.

As the game continued there were more allegories. It seemed sure that I was losing and then the tide changed and I was winning. My granddaughter had lost almost all of her cards but was she the loser? That would depend on one’s perspective and public relations campaign. As we continued she and I both got bored. The game ended without a winner.   

That’s true of any war. We all lose.

Please pray for Shachar Ben Naomi Sara, one of the Israeli Army’s twos, and my son-in-law’s friend. He was seriously injured in the beginning of Protective Edge, had both legs amputated, is still unconscious and in critical condition.

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