A Sacred Time
“Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.” (Psalms 23)
The word for “Your rod” is shivtecha, which can also be read as, “Your Shevat.” Shevat is a big comfort for us since the days begin to get longer and we begin to see the light at the end of the darkness of winter. Although we all suffer through our own spiritual winter at times, this is a necessary part of the cycle of my life. Everything I suffer helps me to grow.
Our sages tell us that every blade of grass has an angel above it that strikes it and charges, “Grow!” Fine, the angel prods the grass to grow…but does it need to be struck? The shevet, the staff that strikes, is a challenge, and if I’m not challenged I tend to get complacent. I feel like I can rest on my laurels and leave well enough alone. Usually, the unease or pain of feeling where I’m still lacking is what fires genuine growth. If I don’t feel that I’m missing anything, why bother to work up the effort to change? Sometimes, I have to admit that I could use the wake-up call from an angel on high.
Beloved Creator! Help me to see Your “staff” as the force that will fire my growth. Help me to realize, that like the grasses, I could use more drive…even when it comes through the agency of pain.