Friday Prayers for Egypt: January 25

God,

There is calm before a potential storm. Unlike the situation of many previous weeks, there is clear picture of the status quo. What is not clear is if it will be upset once more, as January 25 approaches. Will people celebrate their revolution, or renew it?

What is known can be understood, for the most part. Islamists have convincingly won the parliament, which will sit officially on January 23. Its legitimacy is widely acknowledged, setting up a parallel legitimacy with the army, which still occupies the role of presidency. There are unknowns: Will the Muslim Brotherhood ally with the Salafis for full Islamist control? Will parliament confront the legitimacy of the army? These are unknowns, but they are politics. Politics confuses, but it is not revolution. To a large degree, the scene it set. To a large degree, it is an acceptable scene.

God, give wisdom to those who play this game. Moreover, make it not a game, but a trust, especially as it pertains to writing the constitution. Help the game to be civil. Give trust to the participants; give insight to know whom not to trust, and when. Make bedfellows, God, and undo them. But may all bedfellows value fidelity and transparency, as contradictory as this hope may be.

So far, there is one fellow who refuses to bed. Mohamed el-Baradei has left the arena, decrying the lack of fidelity and transparency. Soon, presidential candidates will declare; he will not be among them. Is his judgment sound? Is his politics sounder? Does he lack fidelity and transparency himself?

These are the questions, God, that resound on January 25, engulfing all those who still consider themselves revolutionaries. Has the democratic process been botched, hijacked, or rightfully transformed into politics?

Those who urge further demonstrations, are they simply sore losers, or defrauded pioneers? Is their vision clearer than those who settle, or does ambition prevent their perception of success?

Regardless, God, protect Egypt on January 25. Most revolutionaries do not promote violence. Do some? Will some use the peaceful cover to ferment mischief? Or will others seek to defame them by doing mischief in their name?

So much can be volatile, God. The government is orchestrating celebrations in Tahrir; the revolutionaries are calling for demonstrations in Tahrir. Little organization is advertised; how can confrontations be avoided?

God, preserve Egypt. Sort through the politics in your wisdom, but keep peace between the people. Let not the gains of the revolution be spoiled – especially what was crafted in unity, creativity, and healthy pride. Honor Egypt, God. Honor her people.

Amen.

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