I just returned from a trip to Israel and would like to share with you an inspiring moment and the lesson I learned from it.
We were on a walking tour of Jerusalem with a group of American tourists. Jerusalem today is beautifully rebuilt. It houses a million people and is extremely vibrant. There are many Synagogues, Jewish schools and some of the shopping areas seem busier than Manhattan. It was a hot but beautiful day and we arrived to the Mount of Olives where many great Jews are buried.
We came to the gravesite of the prophet Zachariah, which has around it a large beautiful monument. Our tour guide told us the story of Zachariah the prophet, which in short was that he would sit in the Temple and warn the Jews of divine retribution and the downfall of Jerusalem if they did not mend their sinful ways. This aggravated some of the Jews and he was killed on the Temple mount. The blood that spilled from him on the Temple Mount started to boil and continued boiling for many years until a Babylonian general who was troubled by the boiling blood, started killing Jews and threatened to kill many more Jews if the blood would not stop boiling. At that point the blood stopped boiling and it was buried.
After the tour guide told us this sad story, his son started playing a heartfelt melody and the group joined in. As we were singing, I noticed that the children of our group had climbed to the top of the monument and were sitting there clapping their hands and totally involved in their singing.
The contrast between being at the grave of a prophet, who was killed for his dedication to the Temple, and being in Jerusalem 2,000 years later, with the rebirth of Israel and the flourishing Jewish community was striking. It displayed to me the eternity of Judaism and how our efforts for Judaism always ultimately bear fruit!
Best wishes for a blessed New Year and may we merit the complete redemption with the coming of Moshiach and the rebuilding of the Temple, speedily in our days.