Friday, June 10, 2011

The Spirit Rested Upon Them - June 10, 2011

Shabbat Shalom!
“Would that all of God’s people were prophets,
That the Eternal would put the divine spirit upon them!”
So said Moses when his assistants, Eldad and Medad,
exhibited signs of being touched with God’s RUACH- SPIRIT
at the same time that the Israelite elders, the “official leaders,”
had received a touch of God’s spirit from Moses.
Joshua (Israelite leader-in-training) urged Moses to stop Eldad
and Medad, but it was his call of concern that elicited Moses’s declaration
that all people should be touched with the RUACH of God.
That RUACH – a special spirit that can inspire us,
to more deeply connect us with each other and with the world –
is always there for the taking.
Sometimes we may feel it is has disappeared, when it may be
that we simply need to open ourselves up to its enduring presence
and allow its entry into our souls.
A week ago, I was sitting at services and learning sessions
with many musical colleagues at the Hava Nashira songleaders’ workshop.
What I came to see in attending this program for the tenth time
is that each of us has a little bit of Eldad and Medad inside of us.
At Hava Nashira, that RUACH revealed itself in harmonies, in energy,
in friendship, in enthusiasm, in vocal prowess,
in talented play on an instrument
and in smiles that reflected the joy of musical moments shared.
In our community, that same RUACH may find its way into
our volunteer service to congregation or community,
sharing personal wisdom, giving tzedakah,
contributing a delicacy to an Oneg Shabbat,
offering support to a fellow congregant,
adding expertise to meet a communal challenge,
and giving a special touch to a program that can enable participants
to feel their ties to the Jewish community and the human family
more deeply than ever before.
Would that all of us would feel that RUACH upon us…and, if there are times when we fail to sense the touch of God’s spirit, would that we would know that it is still there, waiting….and ready…to take us to a holy place.
Rabbi Larry