Dear Prayer Partners,
December is upon us and with it comes increasing rain showers, eight days of Hanukkah, and colder and colder days. Last year around this time, Israel saw numerous fires, but by God’s grace, this year has seen far fewer and less damaging fires in Israel’s forests. The end of November saw some nice rain showers and we’re believing God for even more this month!
Please join us in interceding on behalf of Israel for:
With Hanukkah coming up, Jewish families all over the world and especially in Israel are gathering together to remember a special time in the history of Israel when idol worship came to a screeching halt in this land and freedom to worship the God of Israel was renewed throughout this nation. Please pray that during this festival of dedication, many in Israel will dedicate their life to the Lord once and for all! Pray that all of Israel will see the light of our Messiah as the day draws near for his return!
Although this November has seen far more rain than in recent years, Israel continues to plunge into a serious water crisis. Policy makers suggested earlier this year cutting agricultural use of water by 50% but outrage from those in the agricultural industry led to a quick retraction of this proposal. Israel has numerous desalinization plants, one being the largest in the world, as one backup plant that was not supposed to be used except in the case of emergency (another plant being shut down)—we’re in a state of emergency even though all desalinization plants are still up and running. Israel is currently discussing using the backup desalinization plant to lighten the burden until a better solution can be found. Lake Kinneret (the “Sea of Galilee), one of Israel’s main water reserves, is expected to reach a record low this winter, even if the winter is especially rainy. Underground aquifers are at dangerous lows that risk them becoming salty and thus unusable without the desalinization plants. Israel already recycles 90% of its waste water for irrigation (4 times higher rate of recycled water use than any other country). Israel is also a leader in water efficient agricultural methods. In light of these realities, we need to be praying for 2 things: Pray for continued increase in precipitation in the coming months, and pray for innovative solutions for the water crisis in Israel.
Schools & Salaries
This past month, numerous cities’ teachers went on strike in response to the lack of progress in government contracts and because of poor pay. An agreement was reached toward the end of November that is expected to raise the overall average pay of teachers by about $500 a month. However, the average teacher’s starting wage in Israel until this past month stood at about $600 to $2,000 a month before taxes—not much considering taxes (both income tax and renters tax) and overall cost of living are high in Israel. A $500 raise in the average salary is a great start, but continued attention to Israel’s education system is needed to really improve the conditions the teachers are facing. Please pray for Israel’s educators that they will get fair pay for the funding available at the government level and that policy makers will prioritize education as this is a most important part of a healthy nation.
Warmth for the Winter
One in five families in Israel are living in poverty. Please pray that God will provide for their needs and that they will receive any necessary blankets and heaters as the winter months draw near. Please also pray for those who are currently homeless in Israel that God will guide them and provide for them in miraculous ways and that they will find a place of refuge in the winter and perhaps even return to having a home in which they may live.
Following are some ministry requests for Hope for Israel:
Moran had a very fruitful and encouraging trip in the USA last month. Thank you for all your prayers! December will be a slower month for him, where he can be in the office more and focus on planning the year ahead. It will be a less busy month for him, allowing him to rest a bit before a very busy January, February, & March. Please pray for a time of rest this month for Moran, and for wisdom as he looks ahead to the next year. Please also pray that he will regenerate this month, enjoy more time with his family, and seek the Lord in all that he has before him. Please also pray for health for his family in this winter season.
The HFI Board met this month and has made some exciting agreements for this next year for Hope for Israel. Please pray that all of these agreements will work out well and that there will be clear communication between members of the board regarding progress towards our current goals! Please also pray for the board members and their families, for protection against all attacks of the enemy and for healing where it is needed.
We are in need of a male youth leader for NerYah (our city-wide youth group in Jerusalem). We are also in need of someone to join the Hope for Israel team to oversee the work that goes into making our tours unique, special and affordable for visitors to Israel. Please join us in praying that the right people will join the team and that their work with us will truly be in line with their unique giftings and their life calling. Also, some of our staff members were called in for reserve military service this past month. One of the staff members who was called in is also enrolled in legal studies here in Israel (not an easy subject to keep up with). Please pray that he will continue to excel in all that he does in spite of his time on reserve duty. Also, this next month, a few members of our staff will be traveling. Please pray for safe travels and for rest and renewed vision during their time abroad.
NerYah Youth Group
Please pray for God to touch each and every one of the youth who are joining us. Pray also that we may create an environment for the youth that allows for open and effective communication through which we may learn about the challenges the youth are facing and speak into their unique life circumstances.
Believing Soldiers’ Outreach
Pray that during their military service, our soldiers will draw closer to the heart of God. Pray also for those of us working with the soldiers that we will pull together as a staff and keep our hearts in the right place for ministering to the soldiers during this challenging time in their life.
Foundations of the Faith Book
Please pray that every copy of this discipleship resource will have a personal impact on those who read it and draw many into an increasingly deeper relationship with God!
We are currently working out details for the next Israel-Greece tour in 2018. We are also praying for a few more people to join the Experience Israel tour in March 2018. Please pray for those who will be joining us on these tours. Pray that they will be truly blessed by their experience and that they will grow in an understanding of God’s heart for the land and people of Israel today!
In His Service,
The Hope for Israel Prayer Team
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