- Posted by Elaine Zecher
- On November 4, 2016
- 0 Comments
Welcome again to Shabbat Awakenings, a weekly reflection as we move toward Shabbat.
It is good to see the topic of the Sabbath on the front page of The Boston Globe on Wednesday (Nov. 2 “On the Seventh Day, Many Don’t Rest At All). During these past days, weeks, and months so much chaos has been splattered across the media. It is good to have a bit of respite, even in an article.
Though most people might not make use of the actual idea of Shabbat, “…now some people are looking longingly at the religious structures that once forced even the nonreligious to take time to relax and enjoy life, and experimenting with ways to embrace something like the Sabbath to help authorize a day away from workaday concerns.”
Last week we read about Shabbat as part of the very essence of the creation of the world. “On the seventh day God finished the work that God had been doing, and God ceased on the seventh day from all the work that God had done.” (Gen 2:2-3) Shabbat is the crowning jewel of the establishment of the world, formed out of chaos to institute order.
This week, however, as we turn to the well-known story of Noah and the flood, order has been replaced by chaos. “The earth became corrupt before God; the earth was filled with lawlessness.”(Gen. 6:11) God instructs Noah how to build the ark to rid the world of all flesh. The people had lost their way, but they could not see it. Trust and hope in one another vanished. Anarchy began to prevail.
The text hints at another problem as well. When the rains do fall, we learn that it happened on the seventh day. (Gen. 7:10) There is no mention of Shabbat. Perhaps, that day no longer existed either. Order ceased in their spiritual existence as well, and as a result, their inner lives deteriorated.
With anxiety and worry permeating our existence these days, maybe a few moments, an hour, or even a day to experience a necessary pause may be just what we need to soothe our souls.
Qabbalat Shabbat begins at 6:00 p.m. Tot Rock for families with young children begins with dinner at 5:00 p.m. followed by a short service with the Riverway band in the chapel. Riverway’s Soul Food Friday begins at 7:00 p.m.
I also encourage you to check out Torah study on Saturday morning. It starts at 9:00 a.m. with a short, informal morning service and then moves into an engaging, welcoming and inclusive Torah study for everyone and anyone.
I welcome your comments, reflections and thoughts. Connect with me here.