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Standing on a Hopeful Shore of New Beginnings

Here we stand – all of us, Bnei Yisrael, at the edge of Yam Suf - the Reed Sea. Behind us lie Pharaoh’s massed armies. Before us – a vast Sea – seemingly impassable. Great waves lap the shores. We are filled with fear and uncertainty. Is this why Moses led us out of Egypt – to die in the desert, by the hand of the Egyptians in a watery grave? Then the waters part, and we are delivered through the standing walls of water to deliverance on the other side. Our hearts explode in relief, gratitude and joy. Miriam takes up her timbrel and leads the women in song…

This Shabbat during our 7th Day Pesach service our Torah reading is The Song at the Sea. Shirat HaYam teaches us hope: even when we are in a place of deep despair, or overwhelmed by fear - hold onto hope. Jews are fundamentally hopeful, despite the challenges history has thrown us through the millenia – and this is no easy position to hold. Shirat HaYam teaches a message of renewal. We journey through the narrow walls of water, and we emerge transformed – a free People delivered from danger, ready for new encounters, new beginnings, new life.  Surely this Pesach, as we emerge from a year of lockdown and face forwards, with a fresh sea breeze behind us, to the beckoning of Spring and Summer, these messages of hope and renewal speak to us with renewed meaning and significance.

May we All be Blessed with Hope and Renewal!

Shabbat Shalom and Chag Sameach!

Rabbi Lisa