Parasha With Passion – Torah Reading Cycle – Week #15
In Parashat Bo, we read of the release of the last three plagues, the laws of Passover, and Israel’s exodus from Egypt. What an exciting time for the children of Israel! What fascinates me about Parashat Bo is a verse of scripture that seems to be relatively out of place, because in the middle the biggest night in history, God commanded Moses to create a calendar.
“This month will mark the beginning of months for you; it is to be the first month of the year for you.”
So what does keeping time (a calendar) have to do with liberty? Perhaps, God commanded Moses to create a calendar because “time” records the special moments in our journeys. We often remember things in the spans of time.
For instance, I remember the blizzard of 1978. I was seven years old. The snow was so deep it almost came to my shoulders. In 1982, I remember when a Florida bound aircraft hit the 14th Street Bridge. On the news, I watched people slip beneath the icy Potomac River, on that cold day in January. In 1986, I remember sitting in science class watching the Space Shuttle Challenger take off then explode. I remember how my heart sank.
I remember the first moment I laid eyes on my husband Chip. He had a beard and long shoulder length hair – a mullet. We were in church. He was an usher. As he walked by, I thought to myself, how he reminded me of Barry Gibb from the BeeGees. I didn’t have a clue what “time” would eventually reveal for the both of us. All the experiences of my life are cataloged by time.
In this week’s Torah portion, the children of Israel prepared to leave confinement and slavery for a promise of vast open plains and broad spaces. The exodus from Egypt was a great time for the sons of Jacob – and I believe that God wanted them to remember the moment – and to keep record (a calendar) of all the special moments, victories, and triumphs that He would bring Israel.
In our Torah reading cycle, Parashat Bo doesn’t always fall on the first week of the secular New Year. It is a coincidence that we are reading Parashat Bo this week. I wonder, what great things await us? Let’s approach this New Year with the same expectancy, hope, and faith as did the children of Israel when they left Egypt. Great things await us!
Throughout the year, let us savor those special moments and record them. I inherited my knack for sharing stories and writing from my maternal and paternal grandmothers. My maternal grandmother is 92 years old and has journaled every day since she was a teen. I still sit in awe as my grandmother speaks of God and all the great things she has seen. Also, my paternal great-great grandmother was 10-years old during the Civil War and witnessed the Battle of Cedar Creek. Her Civil War memoirs were published in the 1920’s – (click here to read it)
Recording precious moments and special memories are awesome legacies to leave behind. Time is a precious gift. We don’t get a lot of it. I pray that God will fill your New Year with special moments and great memories to pass on the next generation. We must remember the spiritual legacy that has been passed on to us.
When I become discouraged, I take stock in the spiritual heritage passed to me by my grandmothers. I am an OVERCOMER. It is written in my spiritual DNA. I stand in the strength of generations of strong, holy, women of faith; whose prayers brought fortitude to their generation, overcame oppression, and caused spiritual strongholds to crumble.
Likewise, may our prayers bring strength to our generation and cause spiritual strongholds to crumble. We are OVERCOMERS! Amen
Torah: Exodus 10:1 – 13:16
Haftarah: Jeremiah 46:13-28
Next Torah Reading: Beshalach