O Lord, Please Protect My Friend In Gaza!

As violence intensifies today in the Gaza Strip – rockets from Hamas toward Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, air strikes and a possible ground attack from Israel – my heart is heavy. Concerned. I fear for my friends there.

A few years ago I met a wonderful man from Gaza – Khaled – while he was in our city working on his master’s degree. We had such good discussions about life in Gaza and our respective faiths – sometimes until 1 or 2 in the morning. Sometimes his other friends from Gaza would come over and join in the conversations, like in the picture above. I still remember what one of them told me as he walked me to my car:

“If we do not work to have peace between us now, our sons may fight against each other one day.”

As one who wants to build bridges and tear down walls between Muslims and Christians, I am only too eager to work for peace. And pray for it too.

This is my prayer for peace tonight:

“Father, I confess to you that I am very worried about Khaled and the other men from Gaza that I care about. I am concerned for their safety and that of their families. Dear Lord, please protect them! Almighty God, please preserve lives – especially the women and children. Let this conflict not explode and carry over into the surrounding nations. You know I care about the Palestinian people so much. I long to see them have the same freedoms I enjoy. Please do a miracle, Lord. Bring peace between the Jewish and Palestinian people. You love them both. You are a God of peace. I pray these things in Jesus’ name, Amen.”

4 thoughts on “O Lord, Please Protect My Friend In Gaza!

  1. I am so excited! I heard back from my friend, Khaled and he is safe thus far in Gaza. Here are excerpts of his e-mail response:

    My dear friend Mark,
    Thank you so much for your care and concern. It’s several days since I checked my email because of my job preoccupation and, these days, war on Gaza. Just tonight I saw your email. We are Ok so far. The Israeli aircrafts strike buildings, motorcycles, and pedistrians. Life is paralized; no work, no schools. Just food and medicine industries work. The government installations are stroken and totally demolished. Everybody is under risk here. Allah is watching the Persecution and oppression the Palestinian have suffered for many years. . .We are full of hope and firmly confident. . .
    Whenever I read your emails, I feel a strong passion attracts me for the America.
    Khaled.

    • I heard further word from Khaled after the truce between Hamas and Israel. He said this when I asked him what it was like during the bombing of Gaza:

      1. “Life was a very dull, full of routines, i.e. you eat, sleep, listen\watch news, waiting a bomb to smash your home and wife and kids. You cann’t do anything just watching news at the TV and listen to news at the cell phones. Life was paralyzed. On the other hand, people are optimistic and live as if nothing was happenning.”
      2. “Our emotion feeling depends on what happened. If there is a massacre committed, the emotions are anger” or “numb to it.”

  2. II think that all countries, all nations and all the faithful are facing a new paradigm. Our wars between each other on the basis of boundaries of land, or legitimacy of faith, is being both manipulated and used. I am catholic and believe all of the great faiths, have different paths as God planned

    I am scared of our fighting. Our fighting seems to me to be centred in an argument to decide who is the most correct, or the most right, or he most righteous in their faith in God.

    In the mean time many bodies are profiting form our discontent.

    I come from the land down under.

    We have an imperfect answer. We do our best to accept the legitimacy of all the faithful and sometimes agree to disagree, but agree to accept the ultimate truth.

    Our paradigm can only succeed when the faithful agree that their children’s lives are worth more than their own. The only way this happens is if,
    we accept that fighting will harm our children and that
    we deserve to protect and enjoy our children,

    • Oz, thanks so much for reading my blog and for responding with your words of wisdom and compassion for the children. In fighting over any land – Palestine or anywhere else – children are the ones who suffer most!

      Oz, while I agree with many of your excellent points, I feel the need to express some differences I have with you regarding your belief that God planned all the great faiths to have different paths to God. To the contrary, the Bible makes it clear that there is “ultimate truth” (to use your words). Part of that precious, ultimate truth is that God made only one path to Himself. That path is not a religion. That path is a person – Jesus.

      Jesus said about ultimate truth and the path to God in heaven:
      “I am the way (the path) and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (The Bible, John 14:6).

      I have written more extensively on this point in these blog posts:

      http://www.ilovemuslims.net/2013/06/there-are-only-2-religious-belief-systems-in-the-world/
      http://www.ilovemuslims.net/2013/06/the-road-to-paradise-what-did-isa-say/

      I hope you will check them out a leave a response. You are always welcome here!

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