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Shabbat and Candle Lighting
for Friday, August 3, 2018 / 22 Av 5778

Light Shabbat candles at 7:08 p.m  
border experiment

Dear Co ngregation Kehillah and Friends,
Rabbi Sharfman
Have you ever wondered why so many of our rituals and customs are about eating? As the joke goes: 'they tried to kill us, we were saved, now let's go eat'.  Ve-achalta, v'savata, u-verachta  (and after you've eaten your fill and are satisfied, offer a blessing/thanks) are words found in  Parashat Ekev which serve as the source for our tradition of offering thanks at the end of a meal ( birkat ha-mazon), in addition to the  motzi at the beginning. The Talmud adds a caution: after we've eaten and are satisfied, if we don't give thanks for the meal, it's as if we've stolen that food (and experience)! The intent is for us to be conscious and mindful every day of the Ultimate Source of our sustenance, along with the related human and environmental factors that led to the acquiring of our food. Also from this  parasha is the often quoted "not by bread alone..." shared by Moses in these last days of his life as the Israelites, without him, prepare to enter the Land of Israel (the full verse, by the way, is "A person does not live only by bread, but by anything that comes from Gd/is decreed by Gd").
Eating can be very automatic and, sometimes, we eat to fulfill hunger that may have nothing to do with food. The commandment to 'give thanks' serves to make us more aware of holiness and blessing that can be found even in 'simple' things we tend to take for granted, which so many in need, cannot.
The themes of Parashat Ekev contain many important ideas about gratitude, forgiveness, love...perfect for leading us into the start of the High Holy Days season with the month of Elul that starts on Saturday night, August 11th...yes, the High Holy Days are around the corner!
A kavannah for candle lighting on Shabbat Ekev
Please help me to find deeper meaning in all I do through cultivating an attitude of appreciation. Help me to be an instrument of compassion by sharing blessing, so that the resources You have created in this world will be used as You intended - for nurturing life!

I look forward to seeing you on Friday, August 17, for our Welcome Back Wine & Cheese Open House Kabbalat Shabbat! We'll start at 6:15 p.m. with wine & cheese plus activities for K-8th graders (led by our YEP! staff). Services will begin at 7:00 p.m., with an ice cream social Oneg following.

Shabbat Shalom!
Rabbi Bonnie Sharfman  
Congregation Kehillah
info@congregationkehillah.org   |   congregationkehillah.org
5858 E. Dynamite Blvd., Cave Creek, AZ 85331

Mailing Address: 21001 N. Tatum Blvd., Ste. 1630 #439, Phoenix, AZ 85050