As much as we learn tidbits about Avraham Avinu from different midrashic sources, the Torah itself introduces us to our primary patriarch at the ripe age of 75, when he is told to pack his bags and move out of his parent’s house:
“וַיֹּאמֶר ה’ אֶל-אַבְרָם, לֶךְ-לְךָ מֵאַרְצְךָ וּמִמּוֹלַדְתְּךָ וּמִבֵּית אָבִיךָ”
“The LORD said unto Abram: ‘Go from your country, from your people, and from your father’s house…’” (Bereishit 12:1)
The way in which the Torah chooses to bring us into Avraham Avinu’s world is a timeless message to each of us in every stage of life. Whether consciously or not, we have all been deeply shaped by what we were shown growing up.
Your parents’ relationship may be reflected in the patterns of your own marriage, the way they spoke to you may be echoed forward to your own children, and your views of God, Judaism, the world – and perhaps most importantly, yourself – grow from tiny seeds planted before your earliest memories.
As much as we are here in this world to honor our roots, there should always be a movement toward establishing our own identity. Whether you are 25 or 75, whether you came from the holiest home or exactly the opposite, at a certain point you must pack your bags and head out the front door.
Regardless of where you are in your life, God is always whispering the boldest command in the gentlest of ways: “Now it’s your turn – go and find out what you’re here to do.”