The New Shul

Parshat B’midbar/Shavuot

According to the S’fat Emet, this Shabbat — the Shabbat before Shavuot — reminds us that the original Shavuot could not have occurred had there not been a Shabbat before it. Shabbat was a pre-requisite for the revelation at Mount Sinai, and is a pre-requisite for revelation in our own lives.

The Torah tells us that Shabbat was one of the few mitzvot that God had given us even before we reached Mount Sinai. By the time we stood at Sinai and heard the fourth commandment, “Remember the Sabbath Day. . .,” we were already observing it.

Why did we need to have Shabbat in place before we reached the mountain? Because, in order to receive the Torah, we first had to learn to be at peace, to quiet the inner clamor that takes up so much of our energy. If not for Shabbat, the noise inside our heads would have drowned out God’s voice.

All the more so in our lives today. God addresses us in a voice deeper than a whisper, a voice deeper than language itself. The only way that we can hope to hear that voice is by first quieting ourselves. May this Shabbat, and every Shabbat, help us to hear God’s call.

  • 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.
  • Childcare is available from 10 am to noon on Shabbat mornings. Our learning service for grades K to 4 is from 11 to 11:40 am.
  • Shavuot begins on Tuesday night May 30. Join us for our all night Tikkun Leil Shavuot beginning at 9:30 pm. Our topic this year will be “Love Your Neighbor as Yourself: The Golden Rule Through Many Lenses.” We will conclude with morning prayers at dawn on Wednesday. Our service for the second day of Shavuot, Thursday June 1, will begin at 9 am, and will include Yizkor, the memorial prayer.
  • Please note that there will be no e-bulletin next week because of the holiday.