We Can Make a Difference ­ Article ­ BINA

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We Can Make a Difference

by Rabbi Michoel Gourarie

Israel is once again under attack with multiple rocket attacks aimed at densely populated areas. The government of Israel now has a clear goal - to protect and defend its citizens. 'Operation Protective Edge' could become difficult and dangerous as a ground invasion into Gaza becomes a possibility. While the international community may try to condemn, criticize and isolate the Jewish nation, young soldiers may be forced to risk their lives for the security of our country.

How do we in the Diaspora react? To carry on as normal with an occasional "oy vey" is simply insensitive. We cannot just remain calm when men and women (soldiers and civilians) our age or the ages of our children are in potential danger. In addition, a threat to the land of Israel is a threat to the Jewish nation. We are all under attack and the soldiers are fighting for us as well. Somehow, we have to interrupt our daily routine to feel the pain, and take it personally.

But simply crying and feeling pain is insufficient. We must act. We must do something to assist and help the success of the mission. With the right mindset we will understand that we can make a difference even though we are thousands of miles away from the front lines.

Every soldier needs two things - top military training and moral/spiritual support. Every citizen needs physical security and spiritual protection. We cannot provide the former, but we can give the latter. In the battles of Moses and King David every soldier had a designated person who was responsible for praying and learning for him. What it takes is for us to appreciate the infinite value and power of each small thing that we do. Each good deed we do releases a spiritual energy, powerful enough to transcend geographical distance.

We are not on the front lines. But we can help by doing something positive. We can add a mitzvah, say an extra prayer at home or in the synagogue, study some extra Torah, help someone or make up with a neighbour who we don't get on with.

Even the smallest deed will make a difference - let's act now. Let us hope that this will end soon with everyone living in peace and security.

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