The Jerusalem Prayer List – March 12, 2009

“I don’t feel like it!” – This phrase makes me go crazy. When people in the congregation or in the office tell me, “I don’t feel like it,” I have to exercise a great degree of restraint, and at times it is a miracle that I don’t explode or implode at these “I don’t feel like it” folk. I have been preaching and teaching the Good News for more than 40 years and I can confess that there were and there are many times that I just don’t feel like going to the office or talking to people or hearing people’s “bellyaching” and complaints and suggestions and criticisms. I don’t feel like reading books on subjects that so to say, “would cross a Rabbi’s eyes.” I feel like going away somewhere far and sitting in a porch with a tall Ice-Tea in my hand and a good funny book in my hand. It is very, very seldom that I do what I feel like doing! But, even when I don’t feel like it – I do it! I do it because I love the congregation and I love the people and I love the Lord. I do it because it has to be done. At times I do it because there is no one else to do it. Other times I do it because I can do it best. Yet other times I do it because the Lord did it for me!

We ought to be clear on this point. Yeshua also did not feel like doing some things. He did not feel like going on the cross. At the most critical moment in human history Yeshua said: “Father, if You are willing, remove this cup from Me; yet not My will, but Yours be done.” (Luke 22:42) Yeshua did not want to drink this cup of anguish and go up on a cross. He did not feel like it, but he was able to say, “Yet not My will, but Yours be done.”

One time I was in a preachers’ office in Middle Tennessee and one of the “elect women” of the community came into the office complaining that this preacher was criticizing the some who were not active in the congregation or some such a thing. The “elect woman” said, “you are the preacher you are getting paid for praying and for going to church and we have to work hard to make a living.” The preacher answered her: “Dear sister – – – -, do you think that I am not working hard? Do you think that I always feel like dealing with people like you?” Well, that “elect woman” did not get too encouraged to do more and become more active in that church.” However, the point is that most of what I do is not because I like it and not because I have fun doing it, but it is because I want to do it and I have to do it and even when I don’t feel like doing it – it has to be done!

We have to restore the sense of responsibility and mutual accountability and zeal for God’s things and for His Kingdom and the joy that we have in doing good deeds and serving each other. Yes, the joy of doing things even when we don’t feel like it. Yes, the pleasure of doing Good deeds even when it is not pleasant and even when there is a variable doubt in the eyes of flesh that things will really succeed. We have to learn to do things, and give of our time, and give of our money, even when we don’t really feel like it. We have to do the right things because who we are and what we want to become. I want to repeat this sentence: We have to do the right things because who we are and what we want to become. The stress has to be in this statement on, “What we want to become.” If we want to follow our Lord we want to become like Him.

The month of March is always a very busy month because we have the feast of Purim and also the preparations for the Passover, and there are guests and visitors, and birthdays and Bar-Mitzvahs, and spring fever.

We are seeing a great interest in the books that we have written and the new book, Hidden Treasures, is selling well all around the world. Every day we are getting orders through PAYPAL and by e-mail from our web page. It is being translated to Korean now, and to Portuguese, and the Hebrew version is about to go to print also. Also the new Teaching from Zion issue is receiving a lot of very good comments from all around the world. The last few issues of the Teaching from Zion magazine have been very well received. As those of you who read the Teaching from Zion magazine know it is sent free of charge to all who want it the whole world over. We don’t have a subscription fee for this all in color and full of good articles and inspirational reading magazine coming from Jerusalem because we want to spread the Good News from Zion all around the world. However, the cost of sending around 3500 issues by post and printing it in color is no small cost. There are many Jewish people in every continent that receive this magazine and this is their only contact with Restoration theology and with Jewish brothers and sisters in Israel. We want to be able to bless the readers of the Teaching from Zion magazine and for this reason we are asking you to bless us here in Israel and enable us to continue to publish and print this magazine. The next issue will be coming out in just a few days and you ought to be getting it before the Passover Holiday. The issue will be on the Passover and issues related to the Passover in the New Testament. I believe that all who read this next issue will enjoy it greatly.

We had the Netivyah Annual General Business Meeting and many people were amazed at how much we do with the budget that we have. I would like you to know that our administrative costs at Netivyah are below 22% and that includes salaries. I would like for you to know that we expanded near 200,000 dollars on produce for the Soup-Kitchen. Netivyah is not only a “talking” ministry we are doing our very best to be a serving ministry, serving the Body of the Messiah in Israel and serving the Jewish population. We are doing our best be positive part of Israeli society because we know that God loves Israel and the Jewish people and He does not want to see the Jewish people disappear after two thousand years of exile. Wants to see Israel restored both physically and spiritually to the riches of His Good and Saving Grace from the Torah to the fulfillment of the return of the Messiah. Your prayers and financial support is enabling us do this important task and be a part of God’s revelation of His face to this nation and to the whole world. Thank you for taking part with us in both feeding the needy of Jerusalem and also presenting the Good News in the grace and truth of God’s own character and revelation.

Please pray for the following brothers and sisters who are ill and need your prayer for healing: Agi and Sally are two very fine Israeli women who both have cancer. We need to pray for their healing. These two fine women need to see the hand of God move in their lives and the healing physically is going to be much more than just a physical healing of their bodies but will also bring healing to their souls. We continue to pray for Sarit, and Zvi and Sara, and Miriam, Lea, Ahuva, Ilana, all these dear sisters from our congregation in Jerusalem. We have to continue to pray for Paulo in Brazil, and Ruby in Oklahoma, and Liz’s sister in Tennessee. I ask you to also continue to pray for the Lord to heal Marcia my wife and Danah my daughter and all the other people in my family who need strength and stamina to continue doing what is right and good and holy in God’s will.

Please continue to pray for the political situation in Israel. Israeli elected officials seem to have a difficulty building a government and healthy coalition and our enemies are continue to celebrate our national weakness and speak of total destruction of Israel and drowning us all in the Mediterranean Sea. It seems like not many want to believe it when the Sheiks in the Mosques speak of our destruction, but when I hear them speaking and look into their eyes I see that they speak their “truth” with full conviction and with full intent to carry it out just as soon as they feel that they have the power to do it. It would be best for the West and for the Israeli politicians to take the words of the enemy seriously and not ignore them like the politicians in England and United States ignored the treats of Adolf Hitler in pre-World War II Germany. Please pray for the State of Israel and for our enemies too. Please pray that the Lord will do what He alone can do to deliver us from the hate and the murderous desires of our next door neighbors. Please pray for the Lord to shine a great light from above on the deceptions of our enemies and let the world see the truth.

Passover is coming and there are so many people who are unemployed here in Israel and so many people in need of basic holiday supplies. The Netivyah Soup-Kitchen wants to bless as many people as possible with some extra holiday cheer and supply some more people with the basic holiday needs. The Orthodox Jewish community is doing a great job doing this for their own and for many from the general population of Jerusalem. We can’t allow ourselves to be less generous and less helpful and less considerate than those who are not disciples of Yeshua.

Please continue to lift up our hands like Joshua and Hur did for Moses in the battle against the Amallekites in the Sinai Desert. We can’t do this battle without your help and without your encouragement and support.

God bless you with a beautiful spring time both outside your window and inside your soul.

Joseph Shulam

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