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God’s Shelter

Rabbi Gaines SukkotSunday night begins the Biblical Holiday of “Sukkot,” a 7 day fastidious celebration commemorating God’s protection of the Israelites (via the “clouds of glory”) during their 40 year sojourn in the desert (see the book of Exodus). These “clouds”, explain the Sages, were as if a multidimensional shield that encompassed the people from every side. While in their midst (in God’s care) every worldly concern ceased, for heavenly food (called “Manna”) fell daily, clothes grew naturally (on the body) without the need for a tailor, and enemies (man and animal alike) were driven far away. In short, there was an absolute revelation that “God is one” (Deuteronomy 6:4), not only in the heavens above, but also on the earth below. And this, then, is why the Torah (Bible) commands Israel to build Sukkot (“booths”) and dwell (for 7 days) in their midst, to remind us that no matter where a soul may dwell: north, south, east, west, up (in the heavens) or down (on the earth), God’s providence is found. Hence, we must never be afraid, for when we walk with God (knowing He is with us), deserts blossom, enemies prostrate, and beasts fall. So walk on and remember, you are never alone, not now, not ever.

Happy Sukkot

Always Check The Mirror

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