As the 30 Days booklet is being prepared, more conflict in Gaza has broken out. We do not know what the situation will be when you, our readers actually use the 30 Days booklet later. But note, even through war and difficult circumstances, a number of Jews and Arabs have learned to respect and to love each other as disciples of Jesus. Here is a testimony from one Arab believer living in Israel / Palestine.
One Palestinian’s Story
“As a young Palestinian refugee I fled to Nazareth with my family during a time of war. Later we found that our home in Haifa was occupied by Jews during my family’s absence. As a child I found it difficult to understand how God could love some people and put others in the street. As the years passed I became an enemy of the Jewish people. Later after having acknowledged Jesus as my Messiah, I met an old Jewish man who asked for forgiveness for the things he had done personally. His step of seeking forgiveness touched me and since that time my love for the Jewish people has not ceased to grow.” When this former refugee was asked “Is it possible for a Jordanian or a Palestinian to love Israeli soldiers?” he responded: “For followers of the Messiah the word ‘love’ has a different meaning than for those who do not know the Lord. For us, the love of God comes through the cross of Christ.” He continued: “I have also visited Iraq. When I was there God filled my heart with love for the Iraqi Muslims. My heart was really grieved when I saw how the Iraqis and the Iranians had killed each other during the war from 1980-1988. I have also spoken of the profound love which God has given me for the Jewish people when Israeli soldiers were controlling my identity papers in Jerusalem.” He has found it possible to love Muslims and Jews.
- There are several initiatives by Messianic Jews and Arab believers for prayer and reconciliation. The transformation which God brings is the greatest hope for lasting change in the Middle East. Pray for further breakthroughs in reconciliation and deepening love and respect among Jews and Arabs (1 John 4:12 and 19).
- Pray that the hope of true reconciliation through Christ would be better known in Israel and Palestine becoming an example for both Jews and Muslims. Jesus is rightly presented as someone who brings personal peace. He is also very interested in bringing peace between peoples (Matthew 5:9, Ephesians 2:14 and 2 Peter 3:13).