The Israelis on our Food Project have become like family to us. Our family recently celebrated a huge milestone with a very special lady—Dora, who turned 100 years old. Our delivery team meets with Dora every month to deliver food parcels and spend time with her. Dora is a Holocaust survivor, and each birthday is a precious gift. For her 100th birthday, we treated Dora to laughter, hugs, flowers, cake and a special gift. Dora made aliyah (immigration to Israel) at the age of 82 and has been on our Food Project for 18 years, receiving monthly food parcels and regular visits. During her birthday celebration, Dora said to one of our volunteers, “When you come, you bring life into the house.”
Shira is an eight-year-old girl who loves gymnastics, swimming and the color pink. Shira has two sisters, Shoval, 10, who loves art class, and Eliyal, 6, a big fan of her mom’s Yemenite cooking. While all three sisters have different passions and things that bring them joy, they all agree on one thing that makes them sad: the fact that they will never get to hug their dad again. Two years ago, their father died after a long battle with cancer. He was the life of the family, not only through his cheerful personality, but literally—providing for every financial need. Limor, his wife, who has always been a stay-at-home mom, was left with three daughters, mounting bills and no prospects of employment. Struggling to survive this difficult time, Limor became overwhelmed by the weight of her troubles. Bridges for Peace was able to reach out to this family through the Ben-Zvi School, which the girls attend, and provide much-needed support.
We recently visited the school with the international board of Bridges for Peace and the mayor of Kiryat Ekron, Hovav Tzabary. Limor made a special trip to the school to visit her daughters and spend time with us. It was so moving to hear that the girls are all doing well at school, and although Limor is still struggling with the loss of her husband, she has hope for the future. Shoval gave a moving speech in English about what a blessing it has been to be on the program, and Shira created a beautiful card, which she gave to me after the presentation. It says, “Thank you for all the giving, I love you.”
In Matthew 25:31–45, Jesus (Yeshua) explains the difference between behaviors that are characteristic of a righteous versus a wicked person. One of the many ways in which Jesus describes a righteous person is one who feeds the hungry and provides for those who are in distress. Jesus then makes an amazing promise to those who diligently care for the needy: they will be given an inheritance that surpasses human imagination. Clearly it was important to Jesus to make sure that even “the least of these” (v. 40) was looked after and that His followers would never forget their obligation to the poor.
We have been given every blessing through adoption into God’s family, and with that comes the responsibility to live righteously. Jesus taught us how to do exactly that—by looking after the poor and afflicted. As you prepare your dinner tonight and go to the grocery store tomorrow, consider how you can fulfill Jesus’ words. Remember the words of the apostle James that pure and undefiled religion is to visit orphans and widows in their affliction.
Bridges for Peace is here to help you reach out in love to the orphans and widows of Israel. Of the 22,140 people who receive food from us on a monthly basis, 284 are orphans and 1,045 are widows. Open your heart, and give generously to our Food Project so we can serve even more of the poor and afflicted. With your financial support, we can fulfill the call of Jesus to all Christians and bring life into the homes of Israel’s needy.
Blessings from Israel,
Rebecca J. Brimmer
International President and CEO
As we were preparing to send this appeal, my mother, Ramona S. Lewis, 83, went to be with the Lord. At the side of my father, Dr. David Allen Lewis (1932–2007)—the founder of the original Christians United for Israel—they traveled the world, ministering about the Bible and especially the importance of Israel in Bible prophecy. Their pioneering work in Christian–Jewish relations built a foundation upon which Christian Zionists stand today.
As a family, we decided to set up the Ramona Lewis Israel Memorial Fund in her honor. The fund will be used to bless Israeli widows in need.
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