I got a coffee and a pastry, and between him serving customers, I was talking to Moshe*, the young Orthodox man who owned the bakery, about Messiah and the prophet Zechariah. It was a friendly, interesting conversation when I began to talk to another Orthodox guy named Jonathan*. Jonathan was from New York, had ‘made aliyah’ (emigrated) to Israel 5 years earlier and was now a father of five children, loving life in Israel despite its difficulties.
Happy Mother’s Day! Today I am visiting my mom in High Point, NC and I am reminded of when I was in Israel 10 years ago…on Mother’s Day. We were in the ancient Jewish town of Zfat / Safed in upper Galilee, about 10 miles north of the Sea of Galilee. Being seven hours ahead of the US, I called my mom early that morning to wish her a “Happy Mother’s Day,” then walked up the street from my hotel to a small bakery on the corner.
In our conversation I mentioned that I had called my mom earlier to wish her ‘Happy Mother’s day’—suddenly his mouth fell open and eyes grew big and he grabbed me by the shoulders and said, “Today’s Mother’s Day?! Thank you! You saved my life! I have to go call my mother.” We laughed, and with that, he ran off.
Since then I always think of Jonathan on Mother’s Day, and as I have gotten older I have come to realize what wonderful parents I had growing up. Dad went to be the Lord more than twenty years ago; at 83 years mom is in relatively good health, loves and worships the Lord on a daily basis, and is honestly a lot of fun just to be around.
Thank G-d for such parents. I hope you have such a mother. She probably prayed for you at some point in your life, and if she is still living, call her today and tell her you love her. In this may G-d be pleased, and His word honored which says, “Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land that the LORD your God is giving you” (Exodus 20:12).
Pray also for Jonathan, that he will come to find his Father in Heaven. I’ll be leaving in a few weeks for Israel: who knows, perhaps God will have me bump into Jonathan again when I return.
Thank you for your prayers and support for PCinIsrael. And Happy Mother’s Day!
*Names changed for privacy.