The Picture that Proved Prophetic
This past week we had the pleasure of celebrating the brit of Youval and Valerie's newborn son. It was a blessed time of celebrating God's goodness as well as His covenant with family and friends. At the brit Youval shared a story that was so incredible it sent chills up my spine. The story is as follows:
Valerie, Youval's wife, came to the Lord about ten years ago as a teenager in Switzerland. Shortly afterwards she was given a book written in French, about a Jewish refugee from WWII who immigrated to Israel on a refugee boat. He came to the Lord and in the book shared his experience.
The story touched Valerie's heart and gave her a special love for Israel. A close friend, knowing how moved she was by this book, made an enlargement of the cover picture and had it framed. She gave it to Valerie as a gift, and it remained on Valerie's wall for the next ten years.
In 2001 Valerie enrolled in the Gateways Discipleship Training Center in Cyprus. Youval, an Israeli living and working in Cyprus, came to the Lord there and immediately enrolled in the same program. He and Valerie met and were married a year later.
Upon moving to Israel to start their married life together, Valerie received a shipment containing her belongings. Among the belongings was the beloved, framed picture. As Youval helped Valerie unpack he too was intrigued by the picture and began to study it. After a few moments his mouth fell open.
Youval's father was a military man who helped establish the Israeli State in its early days. One of his jobs was to bring European refugees to Israel by boat. As he studied the picture Youval recognized the boat as being one that his father had commanded! In shock, Youval looked closer. (Remember the picture is an enlargement of a small photograph on a book cover.) He now nearly fainted. Standing in the center of this boat was his own father! VALERIE HAD A PICTURE OF HER FUTURE FATHER-IN-LAW ON HER WALL TEN YEARS BEFORE SHE MET HER HUSBAND!
Youval's father, a proud and strong military man, is not someone easily swayed by emotional tales. But this was too incredible to disregard. He shared that he did not have any mementos from this period. He did not know the picture existed. Not many things could touch Youval's father, but this did. Furthermore, Valerie and Youval were able to contact the author of the book and are in the process of arranging a meeting between the two families.
Some say, "God works in mysterious ways." The Bible says His ways are unsearchable, unimaginable. And His ways are far from our ways. I do not know what God intended from this "coincidence" or how it will end up, but I do know His hand in the matter is evident.
The holocaust survivor refugees were being brought to Israel's shores illegally, against the will of the British Administration in Palestine. Youval's father hung a sheet with a makeshift sign in response:
"Keep the gate open. There are more [refugees] coming."
Upon seeing this photo, the Holy Spirit quickened this verse to Youval in a literal fulfillment of prophecy: "Therefore your gates shall be open continually; They shall not be shut day or night." (Is. 60:11, NKJV)
Let's pray for the Lord's hand to continue to work in the lives of Valerie, Youval, and their precious families. Let's pray for His awesome ways to succeed in accomplishing His purpose.