The Sweetness of Starting Over
For those of us here in the United States, the month of September is often a significant one. Between memorials, back to school specials, and the start of the holiday season, it feels like there's something fresh wafting in on the pumpkin spiced air. In today's modern age, we don't remember that this is about the time of year when the harvests come in and back in the day, it was time to start preparing for winter.
Likewise, this is the time of year that we celebrate the Jewish High Holy Days! Biblically, the Day of Blowing (known as Yom Teruah) is a day of alertness, a day to recognize the change in season and prepare for the upcoming day of atonement. But over the course of centuries, the agricultural new year has synchronized with this day of alertness - giving us Rosh Hashanah: the Jewish New Year.
Traditionally, Rosh Hashanah is spent thanking God for the blessing of making it through the year and praying for the next by eating sweet foods as we bless one another with cries of "A Sweet New Year to you!" Apples and honey are the main event, but spiced apple cake and cinnamon-raisin challah are a great addition to the table. Overall, it's a dessert-lover's dream holiday. And while the sentiment is just as sweet as the food, it can be a little overwhelming in the face of current events.
This year will be my first year of High Holy Days without my father, who passed earlier this year. The thought of celebrating these holy days without him makes the sweetness hard to stomach at times. Even at the low point of his illness, my dad wanted our lives to be sweet. To be full of blessing and abundance. To be divinely orchestrated for our good by our Heavenly Father. And they have been! He passed within a few short weeks of these same sentiments last year and it's strange to think that despite the grief, the blessing still rings true. Somehow, though the bitterness of losing him from this earth, our lives are still sweet. The sweetness of baby giggles, of pumpkin spice challah, of bonfires and experimental s'mores, of bravery and courage in the face of sorrow... it's what makes each day a little easier.
So, I hope that this year you can experience the sweetness of starting anew, the blessings hidden in loss, and the kindness in missed opportunities. Because in all things, God is good. And His love for us is sweet. In Him, we have a hope and a future full of joy - even in the midst of darkness.Get your Calendar Here
Big hug to you.
A girl age 9 is about to release her daddy to the Lord. Her family is in Scottsdale AZ where her daddy Ephraim went into hospice a couple days ago. They went there for his cancer treatments. Please pray for Selah. Soon Selah (9), mom Kristi & Hez(3) will return to their church family in Vancouver WA.
The feasts can also remind us of those we long to reunite with. May God comfort each of you missing your loving Daddy.
Thank you for sharing this. My husband have always had a heart for Israel. Even though he is now in heaven with his God and Savior Yeshua, I have my heart still with Israel and the Jewish people. I love my Tree of Life Bible with the Torah devotionals in it. Shalom, Rita
Blessings to you and your family
Thank you so much.