Smoke rises from Wadi Joz in east Jerusalem. The author could not find a media report to explain the event.

What kind of city of this?

I love Jerusalem. As a friend reminds me, the city is sealed on my heart. I ache when I am not here. Still, sometimes, I marvel at its idiosyncrasies. That’s almost too mild a word. This place can be weird. It’s a city of conflict and coexistence. That’s just one paradox. Most of times, I can smile, shrug and say, “That’s Jerusalem.”  Not today.

Re-Drawing the Middle East Map

I recently had a vision of a new season in the Middle East defined by the re-drawing of its borders. I saw angels being released who had sashes over their shoulders on which were written the phrase “Border angel”. They were being sent forth to reset borders according to their original ethnic calling. In the Scriptures, the word “nations” is not used in our modern sense of “nation states” but more in the sense of “peoples” or “ethnic groups”. Many of the crises facing the Middle East can be traced to the colonial powers’ decision to re-draw the map of the Middle East (also in Africa) as modern nation states, putting warring tribal and religious groupings in the same nation state, and dividing united tribal or religious groups into different nation states.

Pray for Gaza, too

Right now, though, my heart hurts for the people of Gaza. They are people imprisoned by those among them who are power hungry and driven by a murderous hate for Israel. In Israel, there have been no deaths directly because of rockets. In Gaza, well over a hundred have died. Israel warns people to get out of harms’ way, but Hamas tells their people to stay put. They know dead bodies will win them points on the international stage.