This psalm asks the question of who is worthy to stand on God’s mountain. “He who has clean hand and a pure heart, who has not taken My name in vain and has not sworn deceitfully (Psalms 24:4).” Today was the first day of AIPAC Policy Conference 2017. It brought together 18,000 pro Israel activists in the strongest showing of strength and pride in the US-Israel relationship anywhere in the world. It’s my honor each year to attend Policy Conference, which is one of my favorite weeks. It’s like a reunion for the Jewish people, with connections from every stage of life popping up over three days. And in addition, it’s a forum for inspirational stories, and inspires me in my work for weeks and months following each conference.
The verse I chose for today resonated as I thought about some of the incredible speakers that I heard share their stories of Israel, Zionism, and tikkun olam. One of the most inspiring stories came from an IDF officer who heads the mobile medical center unit, which Israel deploys around the world whenever there is a crisis. Israeli doctors are first on the scene worldwide, saving lives and serving as the light unto the nations that we’re commanded to be. It’s a completely selfless act – the victims of these disasters aren’t Israelis, or Jews, or anyone that the Israeli army necessarily ‘needs’ to care about. But they do, because it’s the right thing to do – and that’s what continues to inspire me every day.