Rabbi’s Torah Thoughts


Torah Thoughts Vayeshev

Paul Simon once sung, “these are the days of miracles and wonder.” And indeed they are. To walk the land of our ancestors, as I have been doing the past week, is to feel as if anything is possible.

Our group of clergy from all different Christian denominations, as well as a smattering of Jewish leaders, almost all from Western New York, is not only learning about our ancient past, but gaining trust and love for one another to work toward bettering our region and world in the near future. This is the overall message of the Joseph story which we begin in this week’s Torah portion, Vayeshev.

Even as Joseph is thrown in a pit and sold into slavery by his brothers, and later wrongly accused by Potiphar’s wife, we do not fear for his safety. For even in Pharaoh’s prison, we know God will free him and our people from bondage. I have seen and experienced many miracles on this trip – an Arab/Israeli School where kids study side by side in Jerusalem, a brand new city called Rawabi in the West Bank with every amenity in the world, religious settlers talking with their Palestinian counterparts, and Israel bustling with tourists from China, from Africa, from Singapore, even in the dead season.

One of our participants, Rev. Al Warner from the Tabernacle in Orchard Park, who is here with his wife Deb, calls these God Winks, moments when God’s presence enters our life unexpectedly. Our group has had many of these moments. Indeed just being together is bit of a miracle, our last interfaith clergy trip from Buffalo was almost thirty years ago.

How wonderful to be here a week before Hanukkah, in a time when everything and anything is possible.


Shabbat Shalom,

Rabbi Alex

Last updated: December 8, 2017 at 7:43 am