And the War Continues

And the War Continues Jackie Santoro

Day 112 of the war and the dark cloud of mourning and grieving over this nation grows ever larger. One of the more tragic events took place a few days ago as 21 young reservist soldiers were killed when the building they were preparing for detonation was fired upon by terrorists, causing an explosion and the building totally collapsed on them. The nation’s heart was ripped and so deeply wounded as they faced, yet again, another huge loss. And still, the war continues and every day there are always additional casualties.

The hostage situation is heart breaking and the families are warring with the government to negotiate an immediate deal to release them. Hamas will agree only if Israel totally ends the fighting and releases all the terrorist prisoners in the jails – a condition Israel can not possibly accept. There is no easy solution, if any in the natural. There is no deal that can be made which will be good for Israel.

Under this immense pressure, there are the beginnings of division again in the government and calls for new elections and for Netanyahu to resign. The families of the hostages are demonstrating daily and are so very angry, hurt and traumatized. Some of the hostages who have been released are giving testimony of their capture and it is full of the horror of life deep underground, with very little air or food and with satanic captors who are with them every moment. Although everyone hopes for life for those remaining, there is consensus that these conditions cannot sustain life for very long. There is no doubt that the beautiful young Israeli women are being used for the pleasure of these demonic Hamas terrorists.

Please pray for supernatural wisdom from heaven to guide the government. Pray that the demonic protection over Sinwar who orchestrated the October 7th invasion would be lifted and the Hamas leadership would make significant strategic mistakes. We continue to cry out to the Lord for a supernatural turn of events that will enable us to receive all the hostages back and to successfully eradicate the power of Hamas.

On Tuesday last week, there was a “car ramming” terrorist attack in the city of Raanana, which sadly happened the day after that horrible attack when 21 soldiers were killed in the building collapse. There has never been a terrorist attack in Raanana before and it happened that it was my usual day to be with my grandchildren who live there. Thankfully, we had arrived safely home when the news came but I had to explain to them what happened. I realized as I spoke with them and saw their uncertainty and fear that these kids are growing up with terror attacks being an all too common event. This is a generation for whom “bomb shelters” and “missiles” and “terror attacks” are a part of every day life. It is so common as to be thought of as scary but yet normal, but on this day, I realized how not normal it is! Years of missile attacks on our cities and towns have distorted our sense of normalcy.

It is clear that the only thing that can effect any change is God. We have never been in a situation quite like this before and although we have the best army in the world and they are doing an incredible job, the IDF cannot change the hearts of the people. Hate can only be eradicated by the love of God. May eyes be turned to God in this day of despair and heaviness. May we see true revival among Arabs and Jews as we turn to the Prince of Peace and establish his rule!

Our congregation, Ahavat Yeshua continues to thrive and grow. It is such an encouragement for all of us to gather together and to be refreshed and renewed by the outpouring of His love that we have been experiencing in our meetings. We have many wonderful, strong young couples and the children are also involved and love to worship and sing and dance. They are a special generation that God is raising up and we are excited to watch them enjoy God’s presence. In spite of all the difficulties we have experienced, we know that God has wonderful things in store for those who love him.

This week, our young worship leader who is newly married was accompanied in leading worship by her husband, who has been serving in Gaza for months. He gave his testimony that he knows that God saved his life miraculously three different times. He also reported that he has had many opportunities to share his faith with his fellow soldiers. How wonderful to see them together again!

As the world continues to come against Israel accusing it of genocide of the Gazans and anti semitism grows in the hearts of people around the globe, your unfailing support and love towards this nation is so vital. And it makes a difference. You are truly holding up our arms as we continue in battle on the front lines.

Please pray for me personally as I am considering my yearly trip to Florida to see family and friends and to be an “on the ground” witness for all that is happening here in this nation. There are some complications that have arisen. May I hear the heart of the Lord and go forth in his strength.

God is so very good. He is our refuge and fortress in times of difficulty. He is the light shining in a dark place. He has promised freedom for the captives and to give us joy for mourning. He will arise and scatter his enemies. We are his people, the sheep of his pasture. His love never fails.

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. (Romans 15:13)

With love from Zion,