Monday, October 24, 2011

Answering Prayers

On October 5th, 75 Jewish Schools from around the world participated in the Tefilla for Gilad program. A little more than a week later, Gilad Shalit walked into the embrace of his parents in Israel. Several educators that I bumped into the over the past week mentioned how their students felt as if their tefilla really made a difference.

While the adults I spoke to were happy with the overall result - Gilad's freedom - several had not considered in their prayers the costs associated to a negotiated deal with warring parties. Everyone, at least I think, has conceptually experimented with the tefilla for a snow day before a test in school or to win the lottery, usually with negative results. My friend's grandmother is known to dutifully pray for a certain political party to lose elections to prevent them from gaining power.

How often does one actually see tangible results to prayer? Again, for many of the educators that I spoke to (after the release) were excited for their students to see the follow up to this special prayer forum. Is tefilla just an abstract exercise, a philosophical statement, or something transformational?

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