Columbus experience Snow-megeddon yesterday. Granted, we received less than a foot of snow, but you wouldn't know that from all of the local stations preempting regularly scheduled programs to remind us that it is still, indeed, snowing. That public service announcement was clearly aimed for those living in homes without windows.
We were scheduled to usher at temple last night. While we are quick 10 minute straight shot down Broad St. to the temple, we were worried about the well-being of our babysitter. We called (three times, actually) to cancel her. In what can be viewed as Divine Intervention, she never checked her voice-mail and showed up right on time, so off to temple we went.
Literally 10 people showed up for services in a congregation of 600 families. While I felt bad for the clergy, it did result in a very intimate service. A service that included the Torah portion of the Israelites receiving the Ten Commandments at Mt. Sinai. The ten congregants, plus three clergy, gathered in front of the open Ark, peering in at the Torah while Rabbi Rosenzweig read the parsha. Rabbi Zinkow explained that God spoke to each person at Sinai in a voice they could hear. In the voice of a parent, for instance - a voice that should sound sweet to each listener.
After the reading, the rabbis asked what God is asking of each of us. "Oh!" the voice in my head proclaimed, "That makes sense."
When praying every evening, I always do the thank you prayers and the I-would-appreciate-Your-help-with-this prayers. But I have never included the "What do you want me to do?" prayer. It makes so much sense to me.
And upon asking the question, there, in front of the open Ark, I immediately heard the answer. Patience. Tolerance. Kindness. I had heard that voice only once before in a moment of incredible need while we were trying to get Jack safely into the world.
I will certainly be asking this question more frequently and hope that I have the patience, tolerance and kindness to listen to the answers and act.