From time to time we get volunteers that come for a while to help and to love those we serve here in Sderot. Wendy came and spent a year with us, packing food and vegetable bags, delivering food, setting up programs for us on the computer, basically what ever we needed she was willing to help with. She became part of the family and is missed by all. This is her story of her time here in Sderot…
“Kol HaKavod” (literally: all the glory) Is a common Hebrew expression to tell someone they have done a good job or ‘way-to-go’. It is in a way stating that G-d deserves all the glory for what has been accomplished. That is how I feel about anything I have done as a volunteer in Sderot. May G-d be glorified in it all!
It is with a sad heart that I say my “good-byes” to all of the many people I have been blessed to meet here in Sderot. The people who have the least always seem to give the most of what they have. In a town that has suffered and lost so much as a result of the continuous rocket attacks from Gaza they are generous with their affections and hospitality. As I helped deliver bags of food each week, to those most in need that cannot come in to pick it up, I am blessed with many who invite us in for a drink or food. It is in the time we stop and take to spend saying hello, giving a hug, or having a glass of water that says we are not just giving you food, but our love. If I have helped to make one person here know that they are loved and cared about then it was worth all that it cost me to come here.
Looking back over the last 10 months I have had the privilege of helping stain wood and dig holes for benches and pergolas in a park, assist with food deliveries and special giveaways, assist with making and serving breakfasts, picking up vegetables, and celebrating life events and holidays. People in Sderot have taught me the importance of embracing life to the fullest because you do not know what tomorrow may bring. How important it is for each of us to treat each other with love and respect for life is too precious to be wasted with petty grievances.
Experiencing life that is always interrupted by a ‘Tseva Adom’ (color red or red alert) siren, or worse yet by the explosion without any warning. Always wondering is anyone hurt and where are all of my friends and family. As of today there have been 371 rockets fired from the Gaza in 2010. This is the ‘quiet period’. More like the calm before the storm as the town prepares for possible war to strike this summer. It is referred to as the bomb shelter capital of the world because they are trying to quickly build a bomb shelter for every household (including apartments). I have been living in an apartment on Kibbutz Nir Am and walk to town to shop and volunteer. I am constantly aware of where the nearest bomb shelter is everywhere I go.
I have been praying for the protection of Israel and this community of Israel during my stay here. Having to leave when there are rumors of a possible war makes it harder for me to leave. I desire to stay and stand in prayer for Israel. No matter where I go will always pray for Israel’s protection and support Israel’s right to defend and protect her people from any potential threat. If it be G-D’s will I hope to return again soon to my forever friends here in Sderot!