Barukh ata Adonay, Eloheinu, melekh ha’olam, asher kid’shanu b’mitzvotav v’tzivanu al sfirat ha-omer.
Blessed are You, Adonay our God, ruler of the universe, who makes us holy with mitzvot and gives us this opportunity to count the Omer.
Today is day five of the Omer. Hayom yom hamishi laOmer.
Today is Hod be Khesed, gratitude within love, acceptance within kindness.
Sometimes, like the pharaoh, I find my heart hard. Sometimes, I feel stubborn, resentful, angry – and I can’t find room for gratitude. I have always wondered what it meant that God hardened pharaoh’s heart, and on certain days, I wonder why God would harden mine. Gratitude for kindness given – I cannot do it sometimes. I still don’t know why – is it to give me independence? Is it because (I am reading Heidi to my kid) if you abandon God, God lets you go your own way? Is it because God is malicious and nasty? (Possible. Have you seen this world?) Or simply thinks this is funny? (A lot of the world can be explained by God actually being a three-year-old with a wicked sense of humour.) And I don’t know how to soften Pharaoh’s heart. Even Moses didn’t manage that! All I know is how to soften mine – I find that if I say the words “thank you,” even with teeth gritted and the smile on my face so fake it resembles Ontario bagels in quality, it still works, eventually. If I ask God for help, and I express gratitude – my heart softens and I can perceive the world as kind instead of harmful again.
Today, I say “thank you” for kindness. I commit to noticing kindness and thanking those who give it, even when I am hurting inside.