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  • submitted by Nikola K

The Valley


Have you ever been through the valley of the shadow of death? Or visited someone there?

I would like to share about a visit to the “Valley of the Shadow of Death” when God’s “Machaseh staff” came, brought light, helped...and yes, even gave joy and hope!

This year, God led me to Jerusalem for the second time, to the Machaseh Project.

I was able to visit an Orthodox family with 9 children (aged 5-25 years) for four weeks. The family had experienced an extremely difficult time, because the father had landed in jail and the mother had just spent some time in intensive care due to these very burdensome circumstances. The Machaseh director had visited her at the hospital several times and supplied the traumatized family with the most basic necessities.

I started with a certain inner tension and a feeling of helplessness. At my first visit, I met an exhausted, fragile woman with her shy, well brought up and cute children. Because only one daughter speaks English, we unfortunately could not communicate very much. But they enjoyed playing and doing crafts with the Swiss material very much and that went well without many words. Unfortunately, they refused my help to clean the household and to clear up the general disorder. So I had certain doubts... Could I do anything at all during the four planned visits?

At the second visit I received some help from a Swiss couple, so that we were able to teach the children some new games which really got them going and having fun! For me, it was special that from that point on, the mother allowed us to pray for her at the end of our visits.

The third visit began with dealing with the never ending piles of laundry and it showed us how well and independently the older children were able to organize things. We were surprised by their feeling of responsibility and the talents that came out in a very practical way. Our tips and readiness to help acted sufficiently as “catalysts”. Naturally, we also laughed a lot together and built up a certain trust. At the fourth visit, there was a big change when two old and torn sofas were suddenly replaced with two used ones in good condition, when the rooms were clean and tidy and a new lamp stood in the living room instead of the old broken one.

In this way, with God’s help through Machaseh’s hands, a great deal was changed!

Both the mother and the children said goodbye to me with touching affection and expressed their thanks effusively more than once. Looking back, I am simply amazed at this fast development! At the same time, I am relieved and happy that this traumatized family will continue to be assisted and will thus be supported in this process.

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