The New Shul

Parshat Vayera

This week’s parashah, Vayera, tells the story of the near-death of Hagar and her son Yishmael. When Hagar lost her way in the desert and ran out of water, she gave up hope and believed that all was lost. But “God opened her eyes and she saw a well of water,” which apparently had been there all the time.

Rabbi Yitzhak Meir of Ger drew a lesson from that story. The things that we need most urgently in life are all right in front of us. We are surrounded by blessings all the time. All that we lack is the ability to recognize them. That is what Psalm 119 means when it says: ‘Open my eyes that I may see. . . ‘ (the words that are embroidered on our ark curtain at The New Shul).

Shabbat can help to sharpen our vision. One day a week, we put aside our longings for the things that we lack and take the time to appreciate the blessings that we already have. We open our eyes and see the gifts that were right in front of us all the time. May this Shabbat, and every Shabbat, bring us the wisdom that comes with gratefulness.

  • Shabbat services at The New Shul are on Friday evenings from 6 to 7 pm, and on Saturday mornings from 9 am to 12 noon. The kiddush this Shabbat is sponsored by Marni and Ariel Anbar.
  • Childcare is available from 10 am to noon on Shabbat mornings. Children’s services this Shabbat are: Beyond Bim Bom I for grades K to 1 from 10:15 to 11:00 am, Beyond Bim Bom II for grades 2 to 3 from 10:15 to 11:00 am, and Tween Tefillah for grades 4 to 6 from 11 to 11:30 am.
  • Minyanim during the week are on Sunday mornings at 9:30 am and on Wednesday mornings at 7 am.
  • On Shabbat morning November 10, we will celebrate the bar mitzvah of Aaron Nach, son of Adam Nach and Beth-Jo Zeitzer.
  • Finding Our Way, Rabbi Wasserman’s class on Jewish prayer, continues after kiddush on Shabbat afternoon November 17