|A Letter from Hollisa Alewine
I'm not much of a fundraiser, so I apologize in advance for the clumsiness of what follows. If you've ever seen my promos for HRN, it's obviously not a talent. I think I do better when I just speak from the heart, so here goes.
We have reached the point in the year when it is customary to read the Book of Jonah for Yom Kippur. Although a small book, it is packed with the essence of the moedim: a sense obligation to proclaim the Good News to the stranger, alien, orphan, and widow. The Ninevites were strangers and alien to the Covenant of Israel. They were widows without a Husband and orphans without a Father. So many times Yeshua refers to the Elohim of Israel as Father, reminding us that those who seek and find Him have a Father, yet many seek without anyone to guide them to the Father. What a shame to blow the Yom Kippur shofar to proclaim the year of liberty, yet few desire to preach that liberty to the captives, at least when there is a significant personal cost to do so.
Jonah never seemed to accept his mission to Nineveh with a full heart, even going so far as to sit in his little yovel sukkah and wait to see if Adonai would destroy the city in spite of their repentance. Why is he upset? Could he not bring them to his standards of correctness in the 613 mitzvot in just three days of preaching? Jonah didn't recognize that the cool shade of the gourd vine was a jubilee miracle, for Adonai had caused it to grow, the characteristic of yovel plants. Jonah neither planted nor cultivated it, yet he was angry when that which he neither planted nor cultivated died and destroyed his comfortable little "set-apart" booth. He was more upset about the destruction to his personal sukkah than he was the potential destruction of man and beast in Nineveh.
We are embarking upon a shmittah year in which we will expect to benefit from what grows of itself, i.e., that which the Father will cause to grow, not that for which we plant and labor. What are we expected to plant in the shmittah year? If Jonah is an example, we are expected to plant Torah study and the Good News of Yeshua our Messiah, who is the manifest essence of the moedim. We sow and cultivate spiritual seed, and the Father sows and cultivates the physical seed in a beautiful partnership. We may not have time to cultivate 100% correctness in the mitzvot, but we have to teach what we can in the window of favorable time.
If the Father demonstrated to Jonah the problem with his attitude toward the partnership, then there is something for us to learn. What upsets our little sukkot at this time of year? No electricity to the camper? Rain on the tent? Mice in the cabin? Food too salty? Sukkah not halakhically correct? Not enough people to camp with who are as "set-apart" as we are in observance? Sounds a little like Jonah to me. What if there are still Ninevites out there who are primed to receive the Good News of repentance in this shmittah year? Could we sit in our set-apart sukkot and contemplate that this year?
There are many celebrating Sukkot this year who do not experience the same problems as we. They depend upon others to help with their food purchases, and still they do not eat three meals per day. They sleep on dirt floors with critters scarier than mice. They don't have electricity, or they hope to have money to buy gasoline for a generator. They can't complain about the campground plumbing because there isn't any. They don't have Off and Deet or enough mosquito nets to repel malaria-carrying mosquitos. If they travel to join another group, they ride in public transportation into which they are packed like sardines or they ride three or four to a motorcycle taxi (yes, I've seen it). The dirt shoulders are smoother and safer than the roads they travel, yet they press on and do not complain.
Sometimes we are sent with our two feet and a swim like Jonah to encourage such brothers and sisters in Yeshua or to fish the nations for widows and orphans, and sometimes we use the technology with which the Father has blessed us. He did not desire On-demand laptop streaming, iPhones, iPads, and ROKU at our fingertips for watching sports and checking scores. It was not for watching immodest programs and playing addictive games. It was not for tweeting foolish updates to a day that had no impact on the eternal destiny of the stranger, alien, orphan, and widow. As I heard in a wonderful sermon last Shabbat, the Father gave us all these things to reach out with the Good News, and the Adversary commandeered the technology to grow the Beast of self-gratification.
I think the coming year is especially significant in revealing people on one side or the other of an ancient issue: where do you stand in regard to the Land, Covenant, and People of Israel? Your answer to that will reveal how you stand in regard to the Elohim of Israel. I think strong delusion is already falling on those who have repeatedly made foolish choices in regard to that question, and the gap between us will widen even more in the coming year than it did last year. As with Jonah, I think we know that our window of opportunity is small, yet I think we have an opportunity to consider his example and attack that window of opportunity with enthusiasm for the rescue and every tool at our disposal, including our feet and the technology...and if absolutely necessary, a long swim. I'd like to think that those who are clinging to Yeshua in these last days don't need a thorough dunking to accept the mission to Nineveh.
For this reason, I ask that you consider supporting ministries such as HRN, Beit HaTorah, or The Creation Gospel. We are using every tool at our disposal to reach, teach, and disciple the nations before the bondservants of Yeshua are sealed at a future Yom Kippur. We use our feet as well as the technology to send the Good News and financial assistance to our brothers and sisters who will one day join us in a greater sukkah than we can conceive. It's no good to sit there alone in a set-apart sukkah waiting to see how the Tribulation will go for the world. Like Jonah, such holy people may find that the Father has destroyed His shade for their self-serving holiness, not Nineveh.
I'm not sure how much money Jonah spent on his journey to Nineveh, especially since he took the long way, but there was a cost. There is a cost for technology, gasoline, and delivery systems even though the Good News is free. If you don't believe this, then start calling up people in other nations on your cellphone to teach them Torah. When the bill comes in from AT&T or Verizon at the end of the month, try convincing them that the Good News is free! Maybe ask them if there is a free data plan for Torah teachers and believers.
Baruch HaShem, The Creation Gospel has some faithful monthly donors and others who periodically send support, especially when we have a special project. We do, however, need scholarship money for two qualified, Torah-observant young men, one in Kenya and one in India, to continue their educations. They have much they will be able to minister to the Body of Messiah with advanced degrees. We are considering helping with a Torah-based children's home in Kenya, and these needs are in addition to those we already meet. I try to fund these missions with product sales, but there is only such much writing I can do, and only so many people who will buy. If any of these needs stir you, and you would like to help, we welcome the smallest of gifts.
Obviously we work with HRN because of their ability to reach the nations with the most advances of technology, and we support Rabbi Creeger's missions in Africa and India as we are able. Both of these ministries have proven that they are willing to come alongside other ministries to help where help can be rendered. HRN taped an interview with Rabbi Creeger of Beit HaTorah recently so that she could raise money for a permanent roof on the Hadassah Orphanage in India. Some ministries are able to work together and support one another, and I feel comfortable with the goals and fiscal responsibility of both of these ministries. Our mission is to warn Nineveh and strengthen the Body of Messiah, and if you help either of these ministries, it's as though you helped us meet our mission goals. It is impossible to teach the moedim without emphasizing the Feast of the Nations.
At least twice in Scripture the wicked are described as being "food." The time is short to warn the nations. The firstfruits from the nations can feast before their Father and Husband at Sukkot, or they can be feasted upon by the unclean birds. As far as I'm concerned, to coin an old phrase, "The more the merrier" at Sukkot. Every nation, tribe, and tongue. I'm convinced more than ever that the same questions asked of us in the beginning will be the same questions asked at the judgment of that great Yom Kippur:
Where are you?
What have you done?
Where is your brother?
To those who have supported the refugees from DR Congo in Rwanda and Hadassah Orphanage this year, thank you. To those of you who bought workbooks so that the Kenyan congregations could celebrate the moedim, thank you. We are so thankful to those of you who support these missions and others even without expecting a product in return. Thank you, thank you, thank you, and may the Father grant you this favorable year full of Good News through the redemptive, atoning work of our Messiah Yeshua.
To donate, simply click on the following images. Beit HaTorah donations are redirected to The Creation Gospel. Please make a notation that funds are to either go to Africa refugees or India orphans & widows during the donation process. The Hebraic Roots Network image will take you directly to the HRN donation page. Creation Gospel specified donations can be made by clicking the link at the bottom of this email.