Leah’s blog September 4 2015
So, zeh – hoo, as they say in Hebrew. This is it. Coming to an end of a whole year, I look into the hot blue never changing sky waiting for those clouds of Elul to hit. Soon we’ll be in Tishrei and a new year. As a people, we anticipate. As a person, well I just have a hard time waiting it out. The trees at this time of year have a grey thirsty dusty look to them, moving in the hot chamsin winds of the end of the summer. I have no doubt they share the same wish for rain and a new season, for wellsprings to burst forth, both physical and spiritual. It is not by coincidence that the world was created at the end of Elul. Here in Israel, you feel a newness about to open up like the budding of a flower, but in autumn. There is a passuk, “BaChodesh Cheedshoo maaseychem”- this is the time to review, refresh and renew.
Here in this place where heaven and earth meet, it is “lead time”. We have so much to pray for but also so much to do. If the posture seems like holding yourself in readiness, so classic a position before the days of awe, here we scurry in preparing for it. Real things don’t come ready made. In less than two weeks Shemitah ends and I am mobilizing for it, almost desperate. Years ago I learned to bake the round honey challahs of Rosh Hashana from an older much wiser woman. She was able to read me like a book as I paced around not being able to stand still for too long or even sit down much. I remember the look in her steady olive green eyes as she said as if to herself in a singsong “Savlanoot hee emunah. Savlanoot hee emunah.” (Patience means faith. Patience means faith) as she kneaded the dough. That was for me. Boy did I not know that the lightning bolt of the final redemption was not going to hit at any given moment. Pondering the urgency of the hour, so close to the chag, it seemed too much to wait for so long for the bread………
The world is turning in the natural course of things and life is running its course- We have a lot to pray for. We have a lot to do. The facts on the ground are more entrenched now. How I wish it would move faster!
Shabbat Shalom! Leah goldsmith