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Can I let you in on a little secret? When I applied to Rabbinic school nearly three decades ago, I’d never read the bible cover to cover – hey, most Jews don’t! But when Hebrew Union College accepted me to Rabbinic School, and sent me a reading list to complete prior to the program’s commencement, it included reading the Tanach (the “Hebrew Scriptures” or Jewish Bible).  Dutiful student that I was, I laid by my parents’ pool in Southern California and read bible for a week – cover to cover.  I’m still grateful to my parents for covering life’s necessities as I gained new insight on ancient passages newly contextualized.   Unexpected connections emerged, and I fell in love with reading Bible.  I committed myself to reading the entire Tanach anew each decade.  I’ve since learned that many of my Christian friends read their entire bible far more often.  Still, my single close- read in 1987 was enough to inspire teachers in Israel to ask if I’d been a Bible Studies Major in University!  Well, my love of The Book set it well in my mind and heart!

So at the moment, I’m reading Isiah,a chapter(ish) a day and finding a verse daily to carry with me.  Today, early in this New Year, refreshed by the promise of renewal and reinvigorated by  precious holiday/vacation time with dear family, friends and former students, allow me to share the verse which is singing to me today, Isiah 38:16:

 אֲדֹנָי, עֲלֵיהֶם יִחְיוּ\\ וּלְכָל-בָּהֶן חַיֵּי רוּחִי\\ וְתַחֲלִימֵנִי וְהַחֲיֵנִ  Adonai, by these things ‘we’ live// and altogether in them is the life of my spirit// [so please] renew me, and make me  live.

What brings you life and renewal?  How will you fully live in this day and year?   And below is the Bonus for Biblical Hebrew Students- can you link the colored words in Hebrew and English (sorry we lost the last letter  of the verse due to technical problems… sometimes that’s life:-) ?Still,

לחים- To Life!

 אֲדֹנָי, עֲלֵיהֶם יִחְיוּ\\ וּלְכָל-בָּהֶן חַיֵּי ירוּחִי\\ וְתַחֲלִימֵנִי וְהַחֲיֵנִ  Adonai, by these things ‘we’ live// and altogether in them is the life of my spirit// [so please] renew me, and make me  live.

 

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