This week’s Torah portion, Va’etchanan, includes both the 10 Commandments and the bold declaration of our belief in G-d, the sine qua non of Jewish affirmations, the Shema. [Deuteronomy 6:4] This prayer weaves two paragraphs about the love of God – and dedication to mitzvot – into the words of the Shema. This piece appears in This Grateful Heart: Psalms and Prayers for a New Day from CCAR Press.
Affirmation of Faith
Hear O Israel,
The covenant we made
Together on Sinai
Is a pledge for all time,
A vow for the ages,
To do and to listen
To teach and to learn
With the fullness of our hearts
From the depths of our souls
And the strength of our being
Binding ourselves to
Adonai Our G-d
With Torah and Mitzvot,
Binding our lives to each other
With righteousness and charity,
So that blessings will rain down from heaven
To feed our hearts and fill our land
With G-d’s abundant gifts,
The brilliance and wonder
That flow from service to G-d’s Holy Word,
In remembrance of creation
And our liberation from slavery,
Declaring throughout the generations:
G-d is One,
G-d is One,
G-d is One.
שְׁמַע יִשְׂרָאֵל יְהוָה אֱלֹהֵינוּ יְהוָה אֶחָֽד׃
© 2017 CCAR Press from This Grateful Heart: Psalms and Prayers for a New Day
Postscript: This prayer was originally written for a conversion reaffirmation ceremony, which is discussed in the original post of December 10, 2013. Here’s a link to a meditation called “Doubt,” representing a radically different approach to finding faith.
Please check out my ELItalk video, “Falling in Love with Prayer,” and This Grateful Heart: Psalms and Prayers for a New Day. For reprint permissions and usage guidelines and reprint permissions, see “Share the Prayer!” To receive my latest prayers via email, please subscribe (on the home page). You can also connect on Facebook and Twitter.
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