To Win the Peace

SONY DSCWith a ceasefire that appears to be holding, it’s time to pray an audacious prayer: a prayer to win the peace. It’s a prayer for security, an end to terror, the road to reconciliation, the path to hope, abundance and prosperity. The big fantastic audacious prayer: that we will be bold enough to try something different, living together, not dying together.

To Win the Peace
The missiles are silent, for now.
And sirens still echo in our hearts.
The tunnels are shut, for now.
And foreboding still vibrates from below.
Funerals on both sides of the front.
Fallen soldiers, buried.
And reunions. Grateful reunions.
Trauma and rubble.
Families grieve. So many lost.
We remember them all.
Three Israeli boys, one Arab son,
Dead at the hand of hate.

To win the war,
Let us win the peace.

G-d of All,
Bless the leaders of Israel
With a vision of safety and renewal for all in our land
And for all of our neighbors.
Grant our leaders insight and understanding.
Direct them on the road to security and reconciliation.
Make them a shining light of valor and hope.

Grant the leaders of Hamas the courage
To end their campaign of terror,
And grant the leaders of the PA the wisdom
To boldly travel on a journey
Toward an abundant and prosperous future.
Direct them on the road to compromise.
Make them a shining light of peace.

Grant physical and emotional safety to
Citizens, residents and all who dwell in these lands.
Through our hard work, let this time of struggle and challenge
Become a blessing to the world.

To win the war,
Let us win the peace.

Blessed are You, G-d of All,
Forging nations and peoples
In the crucible of change
Throughout history.

© 2014 Alden Solovy and All rights reserved.

Postscript: Thank you to my friend Rabbi Bob Carroll for his review and comment on an earlier draft. Here are links to other prayers I’ve written during this difficult time: “Children of Gaza, Children of Israel,” “Yizkor for a Lone Soldier,” “The Soldiers on This Mountain,” “For the IDF, Operation Protective Edge,” “They Were Boys: A Yizkor Prayer,” written in memory of Gil-ad Shaer, Iyal Yifrah and Naftali Fraenkel, z”l, and “Another Boy Lost: A Jewish Yizkor for an Arab Son” written in memory of Muhammad Abu Khdeir.  I also wrote two prayers inspired by the thoughts and hopes of 14 visiting rabbis from the CCAR Solidarity Mission to Israel. I had the honor of leading this amazing group in a prayer writing workshop.

My prayer “For Peace in the Middle East” appears in a new compilation “The Hope: American Voices in Support of Israel.” Proceeds of the sale of that book go to the Lone Soldier Center.

Please take a moment to explore my book, Jewish Prayers of Hope and Healing.

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