Posts Tagged ‘leaving Egypt’

 

Crossing

Posted on: January 12th, 2022 by Alden No Comments

A prayer for Shabbat Beshalach in which we hear the Song of the Sea, sung after the just-freed Hebrew slaves, being pursued by armies, make it safely across the sea. This piece appears in my book This Precious Life: Encountering the Divine with Poetry and Prayer from CCAR Press.

Crossing
Every journey of liberation
Crosses the sea,
Pursued by a vicious past,
Surrounded by fragile miracles,
On a steady march
To an unknown destination.

Every journey of liberation
Begins at midnight,
In the darkest hour of oppression,
With the blood of a sacrifice,
With secret signs
And anxious anticipation.

Let us sing a song of salvation.
A song of absolution, benevolence, and compassion,
Of deliverance, freedom, and emancipation,
Of power, rescue, and release,
Of pardon, restoration, and reprieve,
Of the might and the mercy of our Maker,
Of God’s generosity and grace.

!מִי כָמֹכָה בָּאֵלִם, יי! מִי כָּמֹכָה נֶאְדָּר בַּקֹּדֶשׁ, נוֹרָא תְהִלֹּת עֹשֵׂה פֶלֶא
Mi chamochah ba-eilim, Adonai!
Mi kamochah, nedar bakodesh,
Nora t’hilot, oseih feleh!
Who is like You, O God, among the gods that are worshiped?
Who is like You, majestic in holiness,
Awesome in splendor, working wonders?

Let every journey of liberation
End on the opposite shore,
Exhausted but jubilant,
On the edge of an undiscovered land,
With shouts of joy and delight,
When our struggle leads to redemption.

© 2021 CCAR Press from This Precious Life: Encountering the Divine with Poetry and Prayer

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Please check out my CCAR Press Grateful/Joyous/Precious trilogy. The individual books are: This Joyous Soul , This Grateful Heart, and This Precious Life. For reprint permissions and usage guidelines, 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. For a taste of my teaching, see my ELItalk video, “Falling in Love with Prayer.”

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Photo Source: Hebrew Academy

Between Egypt and Sinai

Posted on: April 17th, 2021 by Alden No Comments

On Saturday evening we finish counting three weeks of the Omer. With four more weeks to go, we have metaphorically left Egypt behind, but — on the spiritual journey — we are closer to Egypt than Sinai. This is a meditation on being in the place between. This piece appears in my latest book This Precious Life: Encountering the Divine with Poetry and Prayer from CCAR Press.

Between Egypt and Sinai
Between Egypt
And Sinai
There is only the journey.
The long march from what was
To what might be,
From servitude
To service,
From pain
To purpose,
From Pharoah
To G-d’s holy mountain.

Some days,
More than I care to admit,
I am closer to Egypt than Sinai,
Closer to narrowness of mind
And constriction of heart.
Still I see the mountain
And rededicate myself
To the destination.

Between Egypt
And Sinai
There is only one question.
Are we ready
To become a nation of priests,
Guided by Torah,
Serving G-d,
The Jewish people,
And all of humanity
With our hands,
With our souls,
And with our lives.

© 2021 CCAR Press from This Precious Life: Encountering the Divine with Poetry and Prayer

New here? Subscribe here to get my newest prayers by email.
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Postscript: Here’s a link to my meditations for each day of counting the Omer.

Please check out my CCAR Press Grateful/Joyous/Precious trilogy. The individual books are: This Joyous Soul , This Grateful Heart, and This Precious Life. For reprint permissions and usage guidelines, 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. For a taste of my teaching, see my ELItalk video, “Falling in Love with Prayer.”

Photo Source: WikiMedia Commons

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