Thea, a baby in the womb is the song of its parents, a composition revealed movement by movement by you, o Holy Muse. Inspire expecting parents to look beyond mere expectations toward your untapped vision of what might be. Amen.
Does God take sides? Does God cheer for Israel's victories, or cheer for Israel's losses? Does God pump his fist when Palestine succeeds, or weep when Palestine stumbles? Is God on the sidelines of Gaza, rooting for his team to win? If God were mere man perhaps the Gaza Strip would be one great football field and God's whole life would rise and fall according to the victory of his team. The Christians say God became flesh and dwelt among us They say God became mere man. They also say the God-Man's great victory was accepting death on a cross that others might live. But if Israel and Palestine's men keep taking one another's lives in God's name who will be left to bear his cross? Perhaps the Second Coming that the Christians await with bated breath (as smart phones offer updates about their team) will be another Incarnation, a child born in the midst of blood and turmoil and rage. Maybe the Second Coming will be a child born of love spilling over between a child of Israel and a child of Palestine Maybe, instead of a cross there will be a stand silent and gentle and unwavering Palestinian hand in Israeli hand the fruit of their living bodies God's own child, swelling the mother's belly: an invitation to end life no more.
What will it take for the beloved children of God to perceive that the people they murder are the beloved children of God to understand that the people they hate are their sisters and brothers and fathers and mothers and daughters and sons? What will it take for Jews and Muslims and Christians and other religious people and anti-religious people to quit taking sides to say "It is done"? Will it take a new Yeshua? A new martyr? A new cross? Will it take a wise mother among many wise mothers who learned long ago that only love can yield a victory? Will it take a woman among many women who has seen the futility of this fight all her life to rise up and teach the foolish men what they refuse to learn? God, how long before you touch the hearts of the children who think you take sides? How long before you assure them that they are equally, infinitely loved? How long before they cease their fire and offer open arms of sorrow, repentance, forgiveness? What do you mean to whisper that this assurance this peace this love this transformation of the hardest of hearts in Gaza begins with my own heart?
How does one listen anyway? Take a deep breath. Let silence envelop your entire awareness. Be still. How long is it before your thoughts quiet? How long is it before you stop tracking how long it's been? What is it like to sit, to wait, to let God play midwife to your pregnant silence? How does this midwife move around you? Does she move at all? Does she clasp your hand? Does she sit back in a seat next to you and murmur words of encouragement? Does she simply wait with you, occasionally placing a hand on your swollen belly for signs of what is to come? What needs to be tended at this moment? What needs to be waited on? What needs the midwife's gentle, firm, skillful assurance? What will you bear forth from your listening?