This prayer for Zion is a prayer for the heart of it all - the Temple Mount. Where there is currently a mixing of light and darkness. While I'm praying for holiness to return and for peace to be re-established in Jerusalem, I'm also praying for the place where the Holy of Holies stood. I'm praying for:
Peace vs. Chaos
Holy vs. Profane
Light vs. Dark
Love vs. Hate
Life vs. Hostility.
As we tried to walk around the Temple Mount, we experienced "Waqf" (Islamic people trying to control and manage the area) trying to kick us off the Mount and telling us that the Temple Mount didn't belong there but rather a mosque did.
Muslim people were screaming "alah akabar" at us, intending to rush us out.
At points it was incredibly chaotic, anything but peace. There isn't religious freedom there, the location that is the holiest site in Judaism and where the Holy of Holies stood.
When I pray for the peace of Jerusalem, now I see the faithful Jewish people who still come to pray. In striking contrast to the chaos, they bring peace, holiness, love, life and light back to Mount Zion. They long to get close to G-d's holy mountain, to stand and worship and pray on the Temple Mount. To simply walk on Mount Zion without getting screamed at.
The closest they can get and actually pray visibly and without harassment is OUTSIDE the Temple Mount at the Western Wall, also known as the Kotel.
Baruch HaShem, we can pray in our hearts without our lips moving, without our eyes closed...and they do. Their hearts cry out for peace. Hoshiana, save please.
The Jewish people press on and they pray. Even if it is outside the Temple Mount. With zeal and fervor they pray and worship HaShem. They press on.
While I stood on the women's side praying right alongside the Jewish women and friends I was reminded of Moses, when he pleaded with G-d to enter the promised Land that he longed for. HaShem answered:
The Jewish people are pleading to go to that beautiful holy place on the Temple Mount -- they long for it wholeheartedly! Still right now they have to stand outside and see it, and not go in. Yet G-d is preparing them and many others and when Mashiach comes to reign in Zion, peace will return and we will pray and worship. Together. On Mount Zion.
Shema Yisrael Adonai Elohainu, Adonai Echad.
"From Your heavenly abode You will appear O our King, and reign over us, for we wait for You. When will you reign in Zion? Soon, even in our days, may You dwell there forever and ever. May You be exalted and sanctified within Jerusalem, Your city, from generation to generation and for all eternity."