Jewish message with universal meaning.
Some of you know that once a week I attend my local synagogue and volunteer to lead parts of the service. This week I was assigned to read from the scrolls, ancient Jewish text we call Torah (first 5 books of the bible)
The portion I read is from the book of numbers, chapter 35. The name of this portion is called Maasai which in Hebrew means “the journey,” the journey the Israelites through in the desert.
This particular portion describes 50 locations that the Israelites visit. Some places they stayed for very short time. Other places they stayed much longer. 50 locations!
Naturally, a question arises: Why do we have to read it? Why is it important? Can’t we just say we were in the desert for 40 years and skip these unnecessary details?! Do we really care?
And what does it mean for us, today?
Here’s my quick take.
The journey is important. Each one of us has accumulated “journey spots” throughout our lives. Maybe 50. Maybe less, maybe more. “The spots” can be physical spots, or it can be events in your life, or even “spiritual spots.”
When I think about my journey, my personal Massai, few “Journey spots” quickly emerge. My growing up in Israel, my service in the military, my arrival to the United States, my work in the education, my wedding day, the birth of my children, the birth of my granddaughter, the wedding of my children. But it also have my disappointments, my heartaches, my pain, my gain. These are “spots” as well.
Each one of us has their own Massai, their own journey. And that journey is a combination of all the events leading up to this moment, to the present time, NOW.
Are “the spots” important? Is each point in the graph of life needed?
I will leave this question for you to answer.
And I will a few more questions for you to reflect:
1. How would your life journey be without even one of your “spots” ?
2. Was there a point on the graph, an event that was negative or not desired, yet necessary for arriving where you are today? What have you taken from that event? Were you able to see a gift and opportunity with each event?
50 spots along the map in the desert. Can you think how many spots you can put on your own personal journey map? What “spot”, point in time, was most impactful on you?
Looking back in my own life I know that each experience, each individual destination created my journey and formed the life that I have today. And for that I’m grateful beyond belief.
Be Yourself, be Positive, be the Champion you want to see!