Friday, October 16, 2015

Finding Some Hope

When I cried out it was a cry of surprise not pain or fear. Still, my husband wasn’t taking any chances. Without missing a beat he grabbed the man who’d rammed into me by his shirt front and threw him up against the bus stop. We were some twenty meters from Dung Gate, near the entrance to the Kotel.

“I asked you to move,” the stranger complained in a rather defiant tone of voice.
It was then we saw he was wearing the uniform of a security guard. Obviously late for his seven am shift, he’d called out “Excuse me!”.  But I hadn’t realized he was yelling at me and didn’t move out of his way. My husband let him go but didn’t apologize. There had been a stabbing near Tel Aviv the night before and he was suspicious of any strange movements.

Although that all happened over a year ago it was very much in my mind as we made our way to the Kotel this week. Instead of leaving my mace spray buried in my purse I set it in my pocket with my hand on top of it. I kept my eyes roving in back of me, in front, and to the sides. Thankfully, I reached the Kotel without any excitement. How I needed some time to pour out my heart to HaShem. To beg for an end to the terror. To plead for full recoveries for the injured. To keep us all safe.  

After a strong, intense period of prayer I left the Kotel and once again was attuned to any movement around me. I boarded an Egged bus and kept my eyes wide open. Like before I thankfully reached my destination without any alarms.

It’s distressing for me that I’ve lost track of the amount of terror attacks that have occurred since I was in The Holy City the beginning of the week. I’m mortified that I can’t remember the names of all the wounded and murdered. Also upsetting to me was the opportunist politician’s statement that this was all the fault of the prime minister. What happened to unity in times of trouble?

Before I could get too upset though, another politician also from the opposition spoke up and announced he was cancelling his bid for a no-confidence motion in the government. Like me, he knows this is a time for us to stick together. Another positive note was when various groups cancelled their planned demonstrations, not wanting to take precious security personnel away from protecting all of us.

And Wednesday evening following the attack at the Jerusalem Bus Station there was a spontaneous showing of brotherhood. Young and old, religious and secular, Jerusalem residents and commuters joined together singing the Israeli national anthem, HaTikva, The Hope. Their singing gave me hope. As long as we can remember we’re one people we will never be defeated by the Arab terror.  

Despite knowing this, it’s somewhat scary to think about going back to the Kotel next week. But I am not willing to let the Arab terrorists take my Jerusalem day away from me. So I plan to go back armed with my mace, maybe a rolling pin, lots of prayers, and hope.

Jerusalem Bus station courtesy of
Note: Not everybody has the privilege to decide if they want to ride buses or brave city streets or not. Most Israelis must do these things in order to get to and from their jobs.

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