Wave of prayer

July 4th, 2024

For over 300 days, brave Palestinian truth tellers in Gaza have been a voice to the voiceless. These truth tellers come in the form of journalists and social media influencers who have been instrumental in documenting the suffering of Gaza and providing a platform for their cries. Many of these truth tellers have been killed and targeted. Israel continues barring foreign reporters from Gaza and the few that go in are escorted by the Israeli military.   

• God of light, help us understand that the position we take over the suffering in Gaza and the continuous war crimes committed by Israel is a stance about truth. As we honour and thank the truth tellers in Gaza, we remember the words of John the Apostle “let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth” (1 John 3:18). Lord, let us love Gaza through our actions.     

Lord in your mercy… hear our prayer 

Recently, a new report by a UN independent Human rights body concluded that Israel and several Palestinian armed groups have both committed war crimes and crimes against humanity. This report based its investigation on the attack of the 7th of October and the subsequent Israeli military operations in Gaza from October 7th to the 31st of December 2023.  

• God of all nations, we are broken, enraged, tired, and fearful but we remember that all empires fall. Lord, as more and more reports detail the sin in our land, we remember that, “Those who mock the poor insult their Maker; those who are glad at calamity will not go unpunished” (Proverbs 17:5). Lord, remind us that your love lasts forever and redeems all things. 

Lord in your mercy… hear our prayer     

From June 6th to 27th, the film “Where Olive Trees Weep” premiered, offering a poignant glimpse into the struggles and resilience of the Palestinian people under Israeli occupation. The film delves into themes of loss, trauma, and the pursuit of justice. As part of the premiere, conversations were held with several Palestinians, including Omar Haramy, who discussed Palestinian Liberation Theology. 

• God of the broken, we know that you have been weeping with us for more than 76 years. Lord, assure us you hear all cries and see all tears. Lord, for those of us who are traumatised, heal us with your liberating spirit which causes us to pursue justice humbly and confidently.  

Lord in your mercy… hear our prayer  

June 26th marked the international day in support of victims of torture. Whilst Israel has consistently used torture against Palestinian prisoners and detainees for over 76 years, since the 7th of October the use of torture has escalated and has become more public. Several Israeli soldiers and prison officers have posted dozens of photos and videos documenting their acts of torture on their personal social media.    

• God of the tortured, you know what it is like to be tortured and humiliated. We remember that you said that what has been done to the least of these has been done to you, and so every time Palestinians are tortured, you are tortured anew. Lord, teach us to be in solidarity with the oppressed. Have mercy on those who torture, for their sin is grave. 

Lord in your mercy… hear our prayer        

In recent weeks, Israeli Finance Minister, Bezalel Smotrich, revoked administration powers from the Palestinian Authority (PA) to Israel, over a large territory of the West Bank. This provides Israel control over construction, zoning, and planning for Palestinians in that area. The Israeli cabinet also adopted measures against Palestinian officials, saying that some might be expelled or have their movement restricted. Many Palestinians who live on these lands are now fearing imminent displacement.  

• God of Naboth, protect us from modern day Jezebels and Ahabs who plot, scheme, and murder to steal our lands. Lord, as we become more vulnerable to settler colonialism in the West Bank, where our lands, identity, and histories are erased, we remain faithful that you are just and see our suffering. Lord, we pray that our oppressors may repent like Ahab (1 Kings 21:29), turning away from supremacy and domination. 

Lord in your mercy… hear our prayer      

Last week, Friends of Sabeel North America (FOSNA) announced the passing of one of the members of their Board of Trustees – Nahida Halaby Gordon. Nahida was born in Jerusalem in 1939 and fled Palestine to the United States in 1948 due to the Nakba. Nahida served FOSNA in an exemplary manner, offering not only her insights and experience as a Palestinian American woman, but also her expertise in finance and management. Nahida will be sorely missed by the Sabeel community.  

• God of mercy, comfort Nahida’s family and friends as they mourn. We pray for your mercy to be shown to all those grieving. We thank you for working through Nahida’s life, a life committed to witnessing to your love, justice, peace, and liberation. Lord, help us honour Nahida’s memory by striving for excellence, kindness, and generosity that she exemplified in her life.  

Lord in your mercy… hear our prayer   

• We join with the World Council of Churches in their prayer for the countries of Sudan, South Sudan, and Uganda. 

Lord in your mercy… hear our prayers