November 18, 2018

Lesson learned in Facebook Jail: Look for miracles!

Last week, as terrorists set fire to Israel, my anger raged.  I saw a coordinated attack by those who pretend to love a land that they claim was once theirs.  But the hatred of the Jew was greater than the love of the Holy Land.  And I was reminded of Solomon’s decision to split the baby to test true love.  The terrorists failed this crucial test.  You simply don’t burn down a place you profess to love.

As the fires took over so much of Israel, my anger became more generalized.  Just like the fires, my rage was not contained.  When I saw the pundits dancing in the streets, passing out candy as families- women and children- abandoned their homes for undetermined destinations, I lost it.  I wrote “these Palestinian terrorists…” and “these Arabs are animals and will never become human.”   And “You know what kills me? So called friends who say not one word as Palestinian terrorists set 200 fires to Israel and make 75,000 Jews homeless. The same people who become self-righteous human right activists, following idiotic rants of Rhianna with #FreePalestine when Israel tries to defend herself, the same people remain quiet, in their silence agreeing with those who want to burn Jews as if the Holocaust was not enough…. These are not freedom fighters, don't fool your selves. And guess what? What happens in Israel never stays in Israel. They will come for you. To Europe. To America. As they stabbed Jews in Jerusalem first, they imported their talents to Brussels. As they blew up busses in Tel Aviv, they imported terrorism to Paris. And as #israelisburning they will bring #IsraelFires to America. What happens in Israel, never stays in Israel. It is merely a warning to the rest of the world. The enemy of the Jew is the enemy of civilization.”

If you desire to increase your social media interactions angry rants are the way to go.  My posts were shared extensively.  So viral, that I was reported and placed in Facebook jail for three days.  That’s where you can read what others write but you can’t post, nor respond.

I won’t lie.  I loved the attention.  But, I didn’t love myself.

Although anger gets you many followers, it is hardly the way to lead.

As a physician, I have often trained my eyes to look miracles.  That an elderly woman falls and breaks her hip is expected.  But why do some fall from a ladder without even a bruise?  That a sedentary, obese man with a poor diet suffers a heart attack is the norm.  But why does the diabetic who smokes two packs of cigarettes a day live into his 90s?  Why do some patients beat statistics?  Why is my patient with Multiple Myeloma diagnosed twenty years ago still alive?

Mr. Rogers said that his mother responded to disaster by telling him, “Look for the helpers.”  The trouble is that roars and wild verbal eruptions feel good.  But, they’re like finding out that your lover cheated on you and going home and inhaling a bucket of ice cream.  The reflexive behavior soothes the pain.  But, not only it does not accomplish the desired goal, it makes our standing weaker.

While I was in Facebook jail, I started to look for helpers.  There were dozens of initiatives by Israeli Arabs to help combat the fires.  Hundreds of Arab families in Israel opened their homes to Jews looking for refuge from the raging smoke.  Palestinian firefighters directed by the Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas entered Israel to fight alongside Israeli Jews.  Arab leaders and Muslims around the world spoke up against the arsonists.  Netanyahu expressed gratitude to Palestinian Authority.  And the Jews were not alone.   Russia, Greece, American and some two-dozen other countries offered help and sent planes to Israel to put out the flames.

Look for helpers.  If you don’t look for miracles, you won’t see them.

The correct response to the night is not the curse the darkness but to light a candle.  The correct response to #IsraelIsBurning is to reach out to those who want to help us and plant trees.