5 Reasons I Blog: A One Year Anniversary
As I type this today (early October 2015), there is a lot happening around me. Innocent people killed, people stabbed, others attacked, children are beaten. Everyone is talking about a third intifada. I pray that it will not be so.
My message to you, dear Israeli, Palestinian and international readers, is that WE ALL stand firm and persevere in reaching for HOPE for both Israel and Palestine. I stand with my Israeli friends and my Palestinian people in solidarity, praying that peace will prevail one day for both peoples, that no one needs to live in fear.
A year ago, I was asked to join a group of women who are active in their own way. Each one of them has an amazing set of talents, each different from the other. They are also very unique within their own nations -- all of these women have hearts for both Palestinians and Israelis.
Joining in this blog has been a special experience, not simply because I have an opportunity to write what I think, but because I get to partner with these special and unique women. Here are some reasons I love being a part of this blogging community.
The blog gives me space to say what I feel without rules or regulations. I can honestly share my pain, my frustration and my joys, without seeking to please a particular community. I have the freedom to care for the other side with honesty, openness and compassion.
As a Palestinian, this blog gives me the chance to speak on behalf of my nation, people and community. I have done this in the past on a small scale, but now my voice can reach many more. I live in a world where injustice is rampant, human rights are secondary to leaders’ rights, and peace has become a word we use more than something we long for and actively work toward. Many times I feel frustrated at this system. This blog gives me space and freedom to express it.
I am not accustomed to writing, but this blog has given me the chance to hone this important skill. It is not one that is often practiced in my culture, and it is a challenge to do so in a second language, but now that I have started writing about religious, social and political issues, I have learned about many new areas that have acquired interest for me.
As a Christian woman, this gives me the platform to connect with other believers in Jesus throughout the world. Many times our churches prefer male voices, and there are few places where women can express their views openly and honestly. This is one such place. I can share my experiences and challenges as a Christian in a Muslim context and Jewish context.
This blog has given me a regular opportunity to listen to others who have different views, particularly my fellow Israeli bloggers. I used to think in very black and white terms, my way or no way. It can be hard for me to listen to different views without being aggressive or defensive. This has changed a lot. I respect you even if you have different views.
My wish for this next blogging year is to have more readers, especially among the Palestinians. If we have more traffic, we will be able to reach more people, showing them that there is common respect and value for one another, something that governments, leaders and men sometimes cannot see.
We want to write together, live together, sing together, for our kids play together. The eight of us are already doing this, and my hope is for it to extend to more people in the area. We need more people to experience what we experience, to enjoy one another rather than fear one another.