The New Shul

Parshat Lekh L’kha

This week’s parashah, Lekh L’kha, begins with God’s call to Avram to leave his home so that he and his descendants can become a blessing. The Hebrew idiom, “Lekh l’kha — Get going,” literally means “Go for yourself.” Based on that, Rashi understood the words to mean that God was telling Avram to go for his own benefit.

Rashi’s comment seems strange, since, in the end, Avraham seems to benefit very little from the life-journey that he begins this Shabbat. It is a hard journey, full of trials — just as all journeys of growth and mitzvah are hard. Where is the benefit that, according to Rashi, God is promising?

Perhaps Rashi was trying to make a point about what really benefits us — what really makes us happy — as  opposed to what we think will do so. So much of what we struggle to acquire fails to satisfy us. What makes life worth living, on the other hand, is to discover that we can be a blessing to others. God tells Avram that his journey will be for his own benefit, in that he will discover that as well.

To be part of a sacred community is to feel the joy of being present for each other, and of working together to hear and respond to God’s call. May we, together, experience that joy.

  • The New Shul’s Shabbat services are on Friday evenings from 6 to 7 pm, and on Saturday mornings from 9 am to 12 noon. This Shabbat morning, October 24, we will celebrate the bar mitzvah of Michael Berro. The kiddush-lunch is sponsored by Robert and Shelly Berro.
  • Childcare is available from 10 am to noon on Shabbat mornings. Learning services for children this Shabbat are at the following times: 11 to 11:30 am for toddlers and pre-schoolers,11 to 11:45 am for grades 1 to 3. and 10:15 to 11:30 am for grades 4 to 6.
  • Join us for dinner at The New Shul on Friday November 6, after the 6 pm service. The cost is $18 per adult and $9 per child/teen under 18. No charge for children under 5. Please send in your payment to make your reservation by Friday October 30.