Going from the holy to the regular…

Shabbat was lovely, restful and wonderful. The weekly Torah Portion (Chayei Sarah) talked about Rivkah (Rebecca) who gave Eliezer and all his camels to drink, so we had our table decorated with a small variety of wells and such. My favorite is this beautiful figurine my mom gave me a long time ago, several years before I had my own little girl named after the matriarch.

Our little Rivkah/Rebecca/Becca is normally quite strong on wanting to be called Becca, but at such occasions as when she is mentioned in the TorahPortion, she prefers to be called by the Hebrew name, Rivkah… She likes to see the connection, that she is one of the matriarchs… 🙂

We kept waiting for the rain that seems to have come all over Israel, except for our area of Jerusalem this Shabbat. But anyway, we stayed happy and warm and cozy with our books and games, cookies and hot apple cider, and just listened to the strong winds outside.

Shabbat both starts and ends with a ceremony, and the one at the end is called havdalah” meaning it is separating between the holy and the regular. It is a nice little ritual where we start the week together and wish each other a good week. But somehow, as time came this Shabbat, and my husband called us all to come to “havdalah”, I asked if we could just wait a few more minutes. I just wanted a tiny bit more Shabbat. This day of the week, this time that is set aside, this holy time, it is such a blessing for the soul, for the family, for our people, for all Creation, really.

English: Havdalah Candle with kiddush cup and ...

(Thanks to wikipedia for this photo of a havdalah-set quite similar to ours.)

But again, there is a time for everything. And after a couple more minutes of Shabbat, we all gathered around for “havdalah”. We lit the candle with the many wicks symbolizing the days of the week, we smelled the sweet spices symbolizing that we wish each other sweetness in the coming week, and we blessed the wine that in the end turns out the large flame of the candle. And we went over from the holy to the regular, from our lovely little bubble, to the busyness of the world of computers, phones, appointments, news etc.

Pretty soon we heard about the attack near Gaza and our seriously injured soldiers. And we keep hearing about the rockets that are still coming down like hail over Ashkelon, Sderot and the whole area that is reached from Gaza. Children are kept home from school, and everyone is told to stay close to the safety of their bomb shelters. Now I just got off the phone with someone from Sderot, and I tried to encourage her to stay strong and know that they are not alone, and that we keep praying for them.

Here in Jerusalem, we normally don’t really feel the threats of war affecting our every day lives all that much, but today our family was touched by it more than usual. We sent our abba off to a week of army duty. It is just an exercise, but still, seeing him there at the breakfast table in his green uniform, knowing that he is going off for a week of pretty rough training, in order to be even better able to defend our country, – it just brings it closer to home.

Happy to have time with Abba before he goes off for army duty.

And here I am, including my husband in my prayers for protection over our soldiers, keeping on praying for our friends and fellow citizens who are under pretty constant rocket attacks (Oh, God, protect the hearts of those children!!), and also praying especially for our home and those in it to stay safe and healthy this week when our abba is missing from it.

I try to keep the wonderful memories of Shabbat still fresh in my mind, and not all overshadowed by the picture of my soldier walking out the gate this morning.

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2 thoughts on “Going from the holy to the regular…

  1. hollykaann says:

    I pray for the safety of your soldier, too. I take encouragement from your posts as I do think of the danger and shadow that lingers over your country and your family. We had a very sad and disappointing result from our elections this past week. I am not sure of the future of our country and I was feeling very blue, but then I remembered your posts of your beautiful family and the fun activities that you do with them- you have joy despite the war that is forever on your doorstep. It made me remember that uncertainty is everywhere, but our God is constant and faithful. Thank you for your encouragement and may peace be yours.

    • Te'ena says:

      Thank you for your prayers and for your wonderful encouragement! Isn’t it great that we can be an inspiration to each other in spite of long distances and not knowing each other and so on?! Blessings to you and yours.

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