Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Take the plunge! - Tuesday Kavvanah, 11/1/2011

When I was 29, I was fortunate to have been laid off from my engineering firm in Houston and begin the journey that ultimately led me to the cantorate and to the rabbinate.  At the time, I had no idea where I would end up, but for perhaps the first time in my life, I threw all caution to the wind and re-booted.

Abram (later to become Abraham) faces such a journey in Parashat Lekh Lekha, which we are reading this week.  

 וַיֹּאמֶר יְהוָה אֶל-אַבְרָם, לֶךְ-לְךָ מֵאַרְצְךָ וּמִמּוֹלַדְתְּךָ וּמִבֵּית אָבִיךָ, אֶל-הָאָרֶץ, אֲשֶׁר אַרְאֶךָּ
God said to Abram, "Go forth (lekh lekha) from your native land and from your father's house to the land that I will show you. (Gen. 12:1)

Abram is given no further instruction at this time - not where he is going, not how to get there, not how long it will take, and so forth.  And yet he picks up and moves.  As it turns out, the move is good for him and his family, as he is essentially the father of the Israelite people and he lands in Israel.  But he could not have known that from the start.  

Sometimes making a change in life requires seizing that lekh lekha moment, the willingness to take a chance without a clear picture of what is to come.

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