After a tumultuous week in American politics, Shabbat is about to descend. As we bring this week to a close, I embrace the blessings that we invoke during the week and on Shabbat.
As part of our daily prayers, we ask God’s blessing for just, merciful and competent judges. On Shabbat, we ask God’s blessing for our community and for our country. Our government institutions are always being tried, but now appear to be particularly tested. We believe in the institutions of our government and the checks and balances put in place by the Founders. We hope that even under duress, these cornerstones of our nation will endure and prevail against all assaults no matter how severe.
May our leaders rise to the occasion placing country over party and justice over power. May we have the courage and strength to demand the best from each of them.
As an American, the words of our National Anthem stir within me with a deep resonance. Ultimately I believe that our nation is strong and its government ultimately dedicated to the people it is intended to serve.
As a Jew, as we continue our march toward Sinai and the receipt of the Law. May we rededicate ourselves to preserving protecting and defending the world’s great manifestation of our Jewish ideals in this great country of ours.
Nava Tehila performs a soulful rendition of Yedid Nefesh, the beautiful poem we use to welcome Kabbalat Shabbat. Written by Eleazar Azkiri in the 16th century, Yedid Nafesh is considered to be a love song to God based on an acrostic for God’s name, each stanza begins with one of the four letters of the Divine Name. (the youtube link will take you to other Nava Tehila songs after Yedid Nefesh- enjoy them all)
Wishing everyone Shabbat Shalom