Of Portion and Partnership

Thank G!d I recently received the (long taken for granted) gift of spending the day in Jerusalem. 

I hadn’t fully been back since before Simchat Torah and I couldn’t help but expect the city to be different and unfamiliar; Jerusalem as the tangible center of our communal sorrow, bleak and lifeless. I expected the city of fire to be not much more than the weak exhale of a defeated wick.  

However, B”H, I could not have been more wrong. 

Yes Jerusalem was different and unfamiliar, but only because my assumption of her momentum denied the truth of her essence. I thought the city would be the same as I had left it.

How could it? Jerusalem is the city of prophetic movement. A city cosmically designed to be הבנויה. 

אם אשכחך ירושלים – The fear and distraction of war forced me to forget the consistent creation of Jerusalem. New buildings and tunnels that cradle in the womb of the world, the mightiest of people who live within, nursing from her embrace. 

From this day I was reminded of our one, integral truth. Our blessing in covenant and proof in reality; Am Yisrael will never cease to exist because we are everlasting partners with G!d. We have within us this magical gene of creation. In the face of flood we build boats and in the midst of fiery furnaces, our passion says “try me.” 

Parshat Lech Lecha will always hold an incredibly special space within my heart.

When i was in seminary, one of my greatest prayers was for my family to make Aliyah and live our lives in the celebration of Israel’s eternity. With so many obstacles and challenges, i did what Jews do best–i sought answers for my faith’s questions within and between the melodic words of G!d’s whisper: The Torah. 

We had a weekly tradition of “Mishmar” – a time to gather, sing, learn and connect. Every week a girl took a turn of giving over a Dvar Torah, her thoughts and interpretations of the weekly Torah portion.

That year i chose to share some thoughts on לך לך  with the hope of my family making Aliyah in mind. I expressed my learning with the Zechut that they would make Aliyah. I focused on the concept of “Making Aliyah of your mind” – meaning to elevate one’s reality and intentions through all areas of life. 

Making Aliyah, by physically moving to Israel brings abundant opportunity, but as equal responsibility to match the holiness of the land to one’s actions. Consciously choosing to bring holiness inward and outward.

The land of Israel to me, is the actualization of Divine will and our connection to it. Hashem paves a path and we walk with full faith. The first Aliyah, being Avraham and Sarah in their journey from their once present reality, to their eternal destiny defines the exact essence of Aliyah. 

Among famine, plague and war, Israel continues to celebrate thousands of Jews coming home, walking the same paths generations have been walking since Avraham and Sara. 

A year after this publicized prayer, i had been standing in my kitchen in Israel, with my family, when i realized that this was the Parsha i had in mind the prayer for my family to make Aliyah. Avraham and Sarah followed G!d’s direction without knowing just how much Bracha and light was waiting for them. 

Joy and goodness from Hashem feels like those big buckets at a water park; filling constantly and teetering just before the abundant flow. 

We have no idea just how much celebration is in store for us. 

Avraham and Sarah, in their altruistic Chessed not only brought action through living G!d’s path, but by recreating their world view, reconstructing themselves; Avraham and Sara were able to inspire independent spirituality into a national reality.

Back to the day in Jerusalem, i also was gifted the opportunity to visit a small, hidden gem of a museum in the heart of the city–dedicated to our holy Gush Katif. For those who do not (yet) know about Gush Katif, i lovingly encourage you to learn all that you can about it. Not just about the tragedy that occurred there, but rather (and more importantly) of the life they had cultivated there before and will please G!d return to soon.  

Gush Katif became a fertile growing ground not only of Torah, Jewish empowerment and family-like community, but was literally a bountiful land overflowing with fields of glistening milk and color sweeter than honey. A land fruitful in effort and nurture. 

Gush Katif was a source of abundant agricultural exports and emulated the incredible haven Am Yisrael has been able to create in Eretz Yisrael. 

Gush Katif was the fertile crescent of Israeli agriculture. Fascinatingly enough, the word in Hebrew for agriculture is “חקלאות” and the root word being farm – “חקל”. But, if you take the letters of the root word and switch them, we receive “חלק”. 

This immediately takes us to the end of Amidah. We take three steps back from envisioning, manifesting and praising a world and life more infused with G!dliness and to accompany us, rests our realest prayer. 

שֶׁיִּבָּנֶה בֵּית הַמִּקְדָּשׁ בִּמְהֵרָה בְיָמֵינוּ. וְתֵן חֶלְקֵנוּ בְּתורָתֶךָ:  

That Hashem should rebuild our holy home of connection, speedily in our days. *And* grant us a portion in His Torah. 

I’d like to suggest that within this prayer is also our promise. 

We ask Hashem to give us the path, the home, the land—and we promise to go, to build and to nurture. To have not only a “portion” of the Torah, but to have a cultivating, creative hand in the fruition of G!d’s pronounced word into the world. 

We have no idea just how much celebration is in store for us.

Or maybe we do. 

Maybe we have everything to do with it, too. 

May we be so blessed. 

Shabbat Shalom!!! 

About the Author
Edan is currently studying for a degree in English and Torah education. Since making Aliyah in 2020, she hopes to share some of the wisdom and insight she has been blessed to have witnessed and heard, as well as try to articulate and pass on moments that were most impactful for her. Edan believes in using the power of words to silence our fears, worries and doubts in order to hear our inner truths of clarity, faith and hope. Through some poetry, Torah and anecdote, she is praying to illuminate the lights that already exist in all of us.