It may be in the darkest days of winter that we most keenly feel the need to recharge our batteries spiritually, and there are many ways to accomplish this. Acts of tzedakah or tikun olam, charity and repairing the world, are ways in which we continually rejuvenate ourselves. In fact, we often get back more than we put in! Attending a service is another way. Some people are renewed by reading the stories in the Torah. The sages reasoned that, just as our bodies need water to survive, our soul needs Torah to be refreshed spiritually, and that is why we read Torah several times each week.
Originally, Torah was read on Mondays and Thursdays, which were market days. Public reading of Torah is a much more ancient tradition than is congregational prayer, and it was only natural that, with the evolution of congregational worship, Torah reading would be joined to the service and become an integral part of it. It completed the circle, creating a dialogue. In prayer, we can talk to God, and through Torah reading God talks to us.
We can read the liturgy in the prayer books, we can create our own prayers, we can simply listen for that still, small voice of God, and we can use music to provide the launching pad for communicating with our Creator. Whatever may be your way of recharging your batteries, may you find light and inspiration through your connection with The Source of Life during these dark winter days. Remember, the Eternal Light, the Ner Tamid, is always on in our sanctuary and we are here for you.
L’hitra’ot, until next time!