Omer Weekly Teaching — Chesed 5779

Chesed is the first week of the Omer

The Infinite Presence calls, I take you out into the expanse, I deliver you because I desire you.                                                                                                                       
—Psalm 18:20
 
The world is blooming.
Pink, yellow, white, purple,
Tiny green buds opening to the light.
Gracefully,
Seemingly with joy,
The earth is revealing itself.
 
And this is what is asked of us:
To break through the hard packed ground,
To rise,
To open,
To bloom.
 
            The world is waiting for your beauty, the Infinite calls,
            And I desire you,
            Your glory, your radiance, your truth, your love.
            I am bringing you out into the expanse to shine.
            I desire you.
 
What would it be like to truly believe
We are here to shine in beauty and love?
What would it be like to trust that who we are is a blessing,
An offering, a gift?
 
Out from the narrow place into the expanse of Chesed, and the soul cries:
            The world is filled with so much brokenness, so much pain.
 
All the more reason, the Infinite Presence responds,
            For you to notice the beauty and shine your light with love.
This is the world’s greatest desire.

As we move through the week of Chesed,
May we practice being amazed at the ordinary wonders of life.
May we reach for gratitude and share our appreciation.
And when we feel ourselves caught in anxiety, judgment or pain, may we respond to ourselves with loving-kindness, saying to ourselves with tender care, “You are loved.”

Rabbi Yael Levy

16 Nisan 5779
 

If you find these teachings valuable, as part of your Omer practice, please make a donation during a week of the Omer that resonates for you. This supports our efforts and commitment to make our Omer teachings available to all. If you wish to make a gift in honor or in memory of someone, we will let them know of your gift with an inspirational card.
 
For anyone who makes a donation of $72 or more we will send you a package of A Way In greeting cards that combine nature photography with a psalm verse translated by Rabbi Yael.
 
As we begin the Omer journey in the realm of Chesed, please make a gift to A Way In in honor of someone who has cared well for you in times of vulnerability or transition, in honor of someone whose love has been steadfast and true. Donate for the Omer.

The Omer teachings you see here and can receive as nightly email reminders by signing up for our mailing list, are taken from Rabbi Yael Levy's Omer guide, Journey through the Wilderness, which is available as a whole in print or as an ebook.

The daily teachings will begin Saturday April 20, 2019, and continue to Shavuot, June 8. Also this year, for the first time, A Way In is offering the opportunity to count together one night a week on Zoom, guided live on video by Rabbi Yael Levy. Every Monday evening Rabbi Yael will offer a teaching about the week and the day of the Omer, and we will stand together and count the new day. Counting together strengthens and helps inspire our experience and practice. Go to instructions for connecting with Zoom.

The practice as well as Rabbi Yael were featured in a 2015 New York Times article.

Read more articles about How to Count the Omer.

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