Heart of a Mother
By Valerie Yanay
“The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit, A broken and a contrite heart—These, O God, You will not despise.” Psalms 51:17
Since October 7th, we have witnessed brokenness in Israel, a lack of security, uncertainty, and the immense pain families and individuals are experiencing due to the war. God acknowledges this brokenness. He wants to provide hope and comfort to those experiencing grief, fear, and despair.
We, too, are committed to bringing hope and comfort to our nation through several initiatives by sowing seeds of the truth of Messiah Yeshua in the hearts of Israelis.
Fear is all around us. Even though we are not living in a war zone, we did have instances where we had to run to a safe room or bomb shelter. As a mother of young children, the first thing I noticed was my children’s reactions. For several days, my 7-year-old daughter was afraid to leave the house. Anytime she needs to leave the house she always make sure that there is a bomb shelter nearby.
Living with constant missile attacks quickly alters your mindset and lifestyle. You ask yourself, “How long should I shower?”, “Where are the safe rooms where I am going?”, “Should I sleep with clothes suitable to run to the bomb shelter?”, “do we have enough water and food in the shelter?” – and constant anxiety, worrying about your loved ones.
We’ve been taking youth and young adults to France for the last five years. We bring these young people to a safe place, free from war, stress from rocket attacks, and running to bomb shelters. It is a unique time of learning, growth, fellowship with other believers their own age, worship, and prayer. Together, we seek the face of God daily. It is not only a trip but a time to draw closer to the Lord, our Father, and understand that we are all children of God. We desire for them to fully understand their identity as sons and daughters of God. Thus far, it has been a powerful and transformative experience as we see these young people recognize how much they are genuinely loved by the Father who knows each of them by name. They return stronger. They can withstand the challenges of life in the Land, the challenges of adolescence, and even war. Today, many of those who joined this camp, are serving in combat battalions in the IDF.
As believers we know that we have a safe place in the presence of God, a spiritual refuge that guards our souls and minds. No matter what happens, or what falls around us, we know we have a safe space close to His heart.
“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.” – Psalms 46:2
In our discipleship programs, we also encourage the young people to show God’s love daily. The more they give God’s love, the more it fills them. It’s an opportunity for them to give to the most needy, those living on streets, drug addicts, or caught up in prostitution, and those at the bottom of society. When we go to the streets to distribute food to the needy and homeless, we actually stand at the gate, extend a hand, and say to them, “Come home to the Father’s house; He is waiting for you.” We reach out to them and tell them that God loves them, that there is love, life, and a way to live, and it’s through Yeshua. We pray for people. It is good for them—they lift their hands and ask for prayer. Some are very angry, but not everyone. We are simply giving them the abundant love of God overflowing in our hearts.
“I myself will tend my sheep and have them lie down, declares the Sovereign Lord. I will search for the lost and bring back the strays. I will bind up the injured and strengthen the weak, but the sleek and the strong I will destroy. I will shepherd the flock with justice.” – Ezekiel 34:15–16
We also bring former addicts and former prostitutes to our farm, giving them a safe place of peace where no one will harm or attack them. We teach the parables of Yeshua as we work with His creation – touching the soil with our bare hands, we see God’s goodness renew them as we experience His love. There’s healing power in creation, when we return to the order of creation. Working with creation also includes animals. For many of the former prostitutes, even the simple act of touching the goats causes them to experience healing in their hearts.
S, a former victim of prostitution, came to us after experiencing much violence in her life; she, too, was very violent. But the moment she held a baby goat, something melted in her heart. She suddenly showed a lot of tenderness and warmth. She even smiled—her counselor later said she had never seen her smile before. She took on the role of the shepherd and understood how Yeshua, the good shepherd, sees her. She also reached out to someone else, someone in need; it was an opportunity for her to take responsibility—which was a profound change in her heart.
Over the years, we have seen people rise from the ashes, families reborn, and lives rebuilt for the glory of God. Today, more than ever, we want to relieve, restore, and rebuild Israel – to give hope, life, and peace. To show the way to the Father and call them home. Pray with us for the different programs for the coming year, that more people will recognize the Lord Yeshua as their Messiah and that God would restore and rebuild spiritually more youth and young people. Pray that we can partner with what God is doing and be instruments of healing.