Toda Yisrael

Copyright by Alexa Kwart © 2016
Copyright by Alexa Kwart © 2016

So often, we discuss what should change in Israel. What can be improved. What can make it safer. What can strengthen it. I do this too. We do it because we love Israel and want only the best for it. While this mindset is commendable, let’s be sure to take a moment to appreciate how Israel is right now.

Let’s acknowledge all that is good in Israel. The major things, the minor things, and anything that helps make Israel as wonderful as it is.

Let’s be thankful for the people of Israel. For their pride and determination. For the relaxed vibe of Israelis. For the bravery of the IDF soldiers, the care of those in national service, and the dedicated work of the rest of the country. For the ability of Israelis to be some of the least stressed people I know despite the threats they face.

Let’s be thankful for the country of Israel. For the joyous atmosphere on Shabbat. For the mix of nature and innovation, all within such a tiny country. For its perseverance despite all it endures. For the ability to celebrate Jewish holidays publicly in the Middle East.

 Think of the present, of how lucky we are to have all the amazing things that exist in Israel.

Let’s be thankful for the little things in Israel. For the sweetness of a 5 shekel ice café. For the sense of community when the whole country wears Blundstone boots. For the freshness of food from the shuk. For chocolate milk in a bag. For street signs in Hebrew, the only language to be revived.

Let’s be thankful for the atmosphere in Israel. For the way cultures seamlessly live their daily lives side by side. For the perfect weather. For the fact that we can visit Israel whenever we want—an achievement our ancestors would be so proud of. For the only Jewish state in the world. For our home.

Here are just some of the many things to be thankful for about Israel. But don’t just think of these while you’re reading this. Think of them regularly. Try to come up with others. What is something in Israel right now that you are thankful for?

Don’t just think of the possibilities for the future of Israel. Think of the present, of how lucky we are to have all the amazing things that exist in Israel. Thank you, Israel, for the tastiest chummus, the cutest accent, and the most skillful bus-drivers in the world.

Toda Yisrael.

About the Author
Alexa Kwart is a student at the University of Maryland with a passionate interest in supporting Israel. Through her travels internationally, she has made an effort to connect with and learn about Jewish communities abroad, while maintaing a strong connection with Israel.
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