As a little girl I was always taught that if God wants you to get hurt, you will get hurt – but it is your responsibility to not put yourself in harm;s way. For example, if someone gets hit by a car, God intended for that to happen — but we should never put our life at risk by dancing in middle of the street.

Over the past few weeks I’ve heard more than once that people have cancelled their tickets to Israel in light of recent events. I hear people asking if it’s safe to visit Israel right now. I see utter fear in the eyes of mothers who have children that are studying in Israel or have joined the army and I wonder…

Is taking a trip to Israel right now considered putting your life at risk? What about going to yeshiva or seminary abroad? What about going on Birthright? What about making aliyah? Most of the people making aliyah, I assume, are moving there because they believe the land is ours. They’re moving there because of their faith, their religion. They know the risks, the terror, the constant bombardment of stabbing attacks, the inevitable PTSD… yet they go anyways. If going to Israel is risking their life, are they willing to be martyrs?

Don’t take me wrong, I am not trying to equate people making aliyah to actual terrorist martyrs – I’m even considering making aliyah myself – but just as food for thought…

I’m going to Israel in two weeks; it’ll be my fourth time this year. I am scared out of my mind. I could be having a glorious time walking through the streets of Jerusalem or I could witness a murder. I could be sitting on the beach in Eilat or I could witness a murder. I could be dining at an outdoor cafe or I could witness a murder.

I’ve never had an actual real fear of being murdered until now. But I’m going anyway.

Am I a martyr?