May 14, 2007:

Last night I was reading a novel enjoying the escape into make-believe. Then without warning the author used a character to thrust a sucker-quote. It cut my heart so fast at first I didn't feel it. Then all at once my mind protested, Ow! And, wow.

"There are three stages in every work of G-d: Impossible; Difficult; Done."
(attributed to J. Hudson Taylor, 1832-1905)

Impossible, ha! Along with a number of colorful expletives Impossible! has been the protest assaulting my brain and hammering my heart for two weeks and a day. That's how long it's been since my soul "heard" a burning-bush kind of order, a Level 10 command from God: "Go! Return to Israel!"

Trust me, I know how that sounds. On Sunday morning, May 6, while driving in my car it was an unmistakable mandate. But as days and weeks have passed jeering thoughts have mocked what seemed to be so clear. "A call from God? Yeah, right. Impossible."

I was just there, in Israel, last February. Our oldest son is a student in Jerusalem where he has lived 2 years. The main reason for that visit was spending time with him.

But there was another thing, a wild dream shared with an old college friend. His name is Greg Cromartie. For about 30 years he has engineered, produced and hosted countless radio programs. Our far-fetched aspiration, something only G-d could pull off? Develop and produce our own radio program: one that is...

  • A regular broadcast aimed at English-speaking goyim listeners in N. America,
  • A lively, you-are-there kind of production that brings our audience the voices and the sounds of Israel,
  • A platform featuring patriotic and provocative Israelis,
  • A format urging listeners to listen, and listen hard, to Israeli points of view,
  • And so perhaps for all of us to hear the heart of G-d himself.
When I returned to the U.S. on February 26 Greg and I realized that we had secured:

  1. A U.S. radio network willing to put our program on their satellite,
  2. An Israeli news network willing to let us use any of their broadcast materials,
  3. A well-connected Israeli citizen who can get us in front of almost anybody in that country's government,
  4. An serendipitous new friendship with a man named Sam who has just started a job as the most recently appointed Director at Yad Vashem--aka, The Holocaust Museum: the very soul of Israel.

Basically Greg and I found ourselves with a wealth of material to produce a program.

Everything except for funding. Of course. And how much would it take to get our broadcast on the air by Yom Kippur this fall? Only about $300,000.00.


Which is why 15 days ago when I "heard" God's order, my first reaction was something like, "Impossible!" And to which I felt, in response, a deep, unhappy growl.

After clearing it with a few close friends, and especially my wife, that same day I booked another trip. While Debbie and our youngest son are at a boys' camp for four-and-a-half weeks, I will be in Israel. I leave on Wednesday, June 6, and am scheduled to return on Monday, July 9.

After charging the airline tickets to a credit card I drafted an overall budget for a month in Israel: $10,000.00. That's big--big--money for us. It is in fact impossible.

Within days of committing myself to the trip, $3,500.00 of the needed $10,000.00 came in. And since? Nada but a number of looks that seem to question my sanity. Not that I don't wonder too...

So, wanna sink some shekels into an impossible thing? Send money now.

And if the remaining balance doesn't show up before it's time to leave? I find this prospect terrifying. Only one thing scares me more; I've heard that growl and do not want to hear him roar.