I don’t know whether or not you will be counting the Omer this year, but as we metaphorically follow our 7-week journey from the Red Sea to Sinai, I find myself reflecting…

I am having an increasing number of conversations with friends and family about how life will be “on the other side” of these challenging times. And I’m reminded that Passover is not an isolated event, but part of a journey that is taking us to Sinai and beyond. It’s a journey that’s taking us to a place of myriad signs and wonders calling each of us to be a blessing (if we choose to be chosen) and truly engage in a long-term relationship with the mystery that is the wholeness of life.

Our Torah tells us that on the other side of this narrow passage to a different way of being is a lot of wandering, confusion, uncertainty, conflict, mystery unfolding, learning, and the opportunity (and need!) for amazing growth and creativity and re-creation. And it lasts into the next generation and beyond. No short cuts.

My hope is that we can use the counting of the Omer to help us prepare ourselves for the challenges ahead, strengthen our spiritual core, and respond to each day of the journey with compassion and maybe just a little more wisdom than the day before.

See you at Sinai.

Rabbi Richard Levy writes, regarding the power of communal worship, “If the hopes that we have shared are not to have been shared in vain, we must not leave our words here in our seats, neatly folded in our books. Our words must go streaming out the doors with us, accompany us as we walk on the road, when we sit in our houses, when we lie down, and when we rise up.” I remember these words when I am engaged in public prayer. I try to find, in each step, the lesson that I need to take out into the world when the service is done.