Yesterday was a rainy, dreary day in NC. The after school program was hectic since we couldn’t let the kids go outside t0 run some off the squirrel energy that always accumulates during the school day. Yet Light was awaiting me at sundown. It was my youngest Granddaughter’s sixth birthday.
When we are SIX – school becomes a reality, friends gain a little more importance, letters start to meld into words and sentences, money is a great way to learn math, days of the week become distinct items in life and also a great way to learn to add, but cuddle time with parents and grandparents still rank in that #1 spot.
We gathered our brightly wrapped pink and white polka-dotted packages and set off for #1 Daughter’s house. We arrived to the exciting pandemonium that always reigns when special days occur on weekdays. Granddaughter is beyond excited and shows all the signs of having gotten up way too early; the long school day is over; parents (and Grandparents) return from earning a day’s provision; younger brother – tired, cranky, hungry (no presents in sight) – birthday girl still jumping around; and everyday chores waiting to be accomplished. Pull in the trash cans, unload dishwasher, fix supper and – somehow – expand time to blend a little extra into the birthday mix.
The smell of lasagna fills the house and is enhanced by the laughter, crying and love that is shared by all of us. Finally, #2 Daughter and her husband joins us via skype and the celebration has begun. You gotta love family celebrations. They remind us of what is really important in a world that seems to be spinning completely out of control.
“Say to the Israelites: ‘On the first day of the seventh month you are to have a day of sabbath rest, a sacred assembly commemorated with trumpet blasts.’” — Leviticus 23:24
As we sat around the supper table, Skyping with #2 Daughter in AZ and her husband, Love swirled over our heads and united us together. It is no surprise that Jehovah-Shalom established commandments that would slow His children down a little and remind them of what His kingdom is like. Yesterday, as we gathered around the supper table, Jews all over the world were also gathering around their supper tables to celebrate the birth of a new year – a new life.
Rosh Hashanah, according to Jewish tradition, is the day that God breathed into man’s nostrils the breath of life. It is also considered the day that Issac climbed the mountain to offer his son as a sacrifice. God bound Issac’s hand and a ram was offered instead. From this ram two shofar trumpets were formed by Jehovah-Saboth, and one became symbol of Rosh Hashanah. In fact, their tradition also says that the breath they blow through this shofar trumpet becomes the breath of God. As the trumpet sounds over the nation of Israel on this holy day, so does God’s breath blow over their land giving it new life and strength.
“Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your male or female servant, nor your animals, nor any foreigner residing in your towns.For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.” Ex 20:8-11
A long way around but it all seemed pertinent to today’s commandment. Our Father established holy days and years (Shemitah) for us – for Him – to join together an celebrate what is really important. Love. Forgiveness. Grace. Renewal. Repristination. Things that swirl around His illuminating kingdom everyday. Things that we forget in our cloudy kingdom. I know that I need – at least – one day a week to remember where I came from and renew my goal for where I want to be. A day to become new and pure once again.
“To one who knows the right thing to do and does not do it, to him it is sin.” – James 4:17 NASB