12 Elul 5775
by Patty Arnold
Return and Renewal… we say it, we read it, we schedule it on our phones as a special event but what does it really mean to each of us? RETURN seems easier for me to digest- We return to our beloved and sacred spaces at TBS as well as return to structure, dynamic programs, treasured friends and holy spaces we worship in. RENEWAL… I repeat over and over again to myself. This concept takes more time to process in order to REALLY contemplate its meaning and how it applies for me and my family.RE-NEW… return to new. Renewal affords us an opportunity to reboot, reset and redefine the expectations of what was and in its place create what is. What was, could have been, overscheduling the day to accommodate everyone being everywhere and doing everything. As a mother of three, a devoted wife and ringmaster of a busy household, resetting boundaries speaks loud and clear to me. Renewal can be an attempt to put some “me” time on the “To Do” list. For some, what was could have been, busily dropping off at Sunday morning religious school and then scurrying off to finish those endless errands. Renewal can be; to park the car, thoughtfully reach out to a new face and share time to connect together over a cup of coffee or join in a new class. For others, remembering to light Shabbat candles, taking a moment to appreciate daily life, and saying sorry when we have wronged, gives us a sense of renewal and reawakening. We are so fortunate our traditions reminds us to take this time for and renewal each year. Our vibrant history tells us to retell the past so we never forget it. Perhaps, the importance of never forgetting serves a reminder to revitalize and prompt us to reengage in the vibrant traditions we are steeped in. How will you participate in the renewal process? In what ways will you reengage into the traditions of the past and create new memories for the future? Afford time for yourself to seize the possibilities of the present and change what was to what is. As we step into the High Holy Days, into our new sacred spaces, and into a time of reflection, let us create new memories and powerful affirmations to the possibilities of the new year. L’Shanah Tovah.