God, in the midst of violence, grant us the strength to stand with our Israeli and Palestinian neighbors. Give us the courage to enlarge our vision, our sense of community and place, and to remember the connectedness of all your creation. Forgive and deny any desire to turn away and shield our eyes from those devastated by this war.
We are tempted to repeat familiar stories of pain. We are tempted to recall the traumas that easily fit our narratives. We are tempted to look away from the complexities of this intractable conflict, from wounds that seem impervious to hope.
Help us to remember the mothers who cry over their dead children — all those mothers, Palestinian and Israeli. Strengthen us with renewed determination to work for a real future, a vibrant future for all the children of Israel and Palestine.
Grant us courage in these hours to work for peace with justice and to stand with the forsaken, in the name of the One who was forsaken, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.