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17 Shevat 5784 - January 27, 2024

Parshat Beshalach

Rabbi's Reflections

-Working Together: The Song of Partnership-

Parshat Beshalach teaches us about Kriyat Yam Suf, the miraculous Parting of the Sea of Reeds as well as the song Moshe and the Jewish people sang in praise, gratitude, awe and love for God’s deliverance. However, before this occurs, the people stand in fear for their lives – trapped between a raging sea before them and a ruthless army behind them. The people cry out to Moshe, and he beseeches God’s help. Directly, God tells Moshe, “Speak to the Children of Israel and let them travel” (Shemot 14:15). According to Rav Soloveitchik, God’s instruction teaches us something very important about how He intervenes in human affairs. Says, the Rav, “There are two types of divine intervention: one in which man plays no role, and one where man takes the initiative and God becomes a partner in the enterprise. One would assume that God should be thanked more for the former than the latter. Yet, the more man participates in the effort, the more he must thank the Creator. Our gratitude is increased because we must bless God for the privilege of allowing us to be His partner” (Chumash Mesoret HaRav, Parshat Beshalach 14:15). Consider the roles God and the Jewish people play in the Exodus itself. God is active while the people are passive. Indeed, the people do not aid or contribute to God’s miracles in any way. That being said, after witnessing all of the wonders wrought by God and God alone upon Egypt, neither Moshe nor the people sang any songs of praise and gratitude to their Redeemer. Instead, it took a whole week after they had left Egypt, upon the splitting of Yam Suf, for Moshe and the people to finally sing. Why did the Jewish people wait so long to sing and give thanks?

According to the Rav, “The reason lies in the fundamental difference between the Exodus from Egypt and the splitting of [Yam Suf]. God did not have, nor did He seek, man’s assistance (in the Exodus) … The Jews were to remain in their homes, eat of the paschal lamb, and watch as events unfolded. In such a case, the expression of gratitude was attenuated. In contrast, at the splitting of [Yam Suf], the Creator offered the Israelites a role in their own redemption. He required a leap of faith: a jump into the water prior to the parting of the sea (Sotah 36-37a). The shock of cold water, the fear of drowning, became Israel’s minute ‘contribution’ to the miracle. At that moment they become partners with God, and as a result Moshe and the people full-throatedly sang the majestic Az Yashir in gratitude” (Ibid.). 

God works in our lives in various ways – subtlety and openly. However, the greatest feeling of closeness to God that we can experience is in those moments when we feel like we have done our part in partnering with our Creator. It is in these moments, when we act with God, that we can experience the fullness of redemption, and therefore, can sing openly and unabashedly in gratitude and love. It is true, when something is done for someone freely, with no expectations placed upon them, they may feel less appreciation than if that person had worked in some way to meet their goal. Partnering with God is the finest and fullest way to feel close to our Maker, enabling us to experience gratitude and love. This Shabbat, consider the joys you wish to experience. Consider to love you wish to share. Consider the gratitude you wish to impart. Consider the song you wish to sing, and know, that as you do your part in bringing about your own redemption – through word and deed, God will do His, so that you may declare, as the Jewish people did those many years ago, “I will sing to the Lord, for exalted is He…This is my God…” (Shemot 15:1-2). 

Shabbat Shalom!

-Rabbi Dan

Schedule of Services at B'nai Abraham

Friday Night

Candle Lighting


Mincha & Kabbalat Shabbat





*Modified Youth Services will be held at 10:30am on the lawn next to the shul, weather permitting*








Monday - Friday



CTI Announcements

CTI Full Members!

As a reminder, the CTI Congregational Meeting will be this Sunday, January 28th at 10am by Zoom and in-person at CTI. Your participation is important for many reasons but also because the bylaws require a quorum of 1/3rd of our Full Members in good standing in order to ratify the budget.

RSVP Here to the Meeting

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2023 Tax Statements

Statements of 2023 Charitable Donations are being sent on request only. If you need a statement, please send a request to Larry Smith at [email protected].

Tell America's Leaders to Stand with Israel!

Anti-Israel activists are calling members of Congress. Make your pro-Israel voice heard by calling your elected officials to make clear you stand with our ally Israel against Hamas terrorism!

There are no bad options when it comes to supporting Israel at this historic time, but how much of your donations are having a direct impact on people being directly affected? We have members who are pitching in directly, financially, volunteering. Their money and hands are at work — directly.

Members Vonne and Chuck Kaufman recently roll up their sleeves on behalf of B'nai B'rith International and the World Zionist Organization.

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Shalom Austin Emergency Campaign.


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Thank you Sean & Meredith Clifford for sponsoring Kiddush in honor of Eliana's Bat Mitzvah.

If you would like to sponsor a Kiddush in March, April or beyond, please take a look at our calendar and reserve your spot! THANK YOU for supporting CTI and our community with your sponsorship! Also a big thank you to the many people who help with kiddush prep and cleanup!!! Your efforts are very much appreciated! 

Sponsor A Kiddush

Mazel Tov!

  • Eliana Clifford's Bat Mitzvah
  • Jay Rubin, January 27 (Birthday)
  • Rita Chapin, January 28 (Birthday)
  • Jared Newberg, January 28 (Birthday)
  • Anita Lavie, January 30 (Birthday)

Yahrtzeit Remembrances

  • Alan Zukof, Cousin of Louis Stone, on Tuesday 20 Shevat
  • Harry Gerstenhaber, Grandfather of Gary Gerstenhaber, on Wednesday 21 Shevat

*Please update your shulcloud account with birthdays, anniversaries, and Yahrtzeits to make sure they're highlighted in the Spiel. If you have any questions on how to do so email [email protected]*

Torah Classes at CTI

Take Your Tanakh Series

Tuesday Night | 7:00pm - The Book of Isaiah

Wednesday Morning | 8:15am - The Book of Job

Click Here for more information on how to join these exciting classes.


Thank you to Gary Gerstenhaber for his aliyah donation.

Thank you to Gary and Karin Gerstenhaber for their donations

In Memory Of Martha Shaftel and Howard Stone,

father of Louis Stone. May their memories be a blessing.

Thank you to Gary and Karin Gerstenhaber

for their donation to the Building Fund.

Thank you to our anonymous donors.

Make a Donation

Contact Us!

Rabbi Dan Millner:

[email protected] 

Phone: 512-410-0336 X101

For more contact numbers and emails, visit our website.

Refuah Shelayma To:

  • Allene Novy-Portnoy; Hannah Bassa bat Sarah Osnat 
  • Avshalom ben Hannah Bassa
  • Cindy Newman 
  • Janet Goldberg; Shayna Masha bat Chasha Mina
  • Ken Friedman
  • Rebecca Millner; Rivkah bat Shoshana
  • Sheina Ruchel bat Henya Leah
  • Tzvi David ben Rivka Golda
  • Yoel Simcha ben Chaya Risha 
  • Sulta bat Nedgma
  • Zvi Aharon ben Bayla
  • Yaira bat Sarah
  • Tamar bat Chaya
  • Ilana bat Gheita
  • HaRav Avram Meir ben Eli Yosef v'Shira Chanah.
  • Rabbi Harold Liebowitz, HaRav Chaim Alter ben Necha. 
  • Baruch Akiva Ben Rivka
  • Miriam bat Helen
  • Rivka Michal bat Sarah Chana
  • Lori Garza 
  • Yisroel Natan ben Sarah
  • Masha Gitil bas Chaya Yita
  • Allen Levinson; Avraham Yitzchak ben Gittel
  • Moshe ben Reizel
  • Avigail Malkah bat Devorah
  • David Moshe ben Sylvia
  • Shoshana bat Yocheved
  • Miriam bat Rachel v'Mordechai
  • Alta Shoshana bat Shulamit
  • Meir Psachia ben Tziril
  • Geni Berman Abitbol
  • Beilya Golda bat Leah
  • Yosef Yehoshua ben Sarah
  • Jonathan Malawer (Yosef ben Bracha)
  • Fivel ben Sarah HaLevi
  • Adam ben Chanah
  • Rafael ben Sheindal Leah
  • Aharon Asher ben Chaya Naomi
  • Esther Malka Fraida bat Serel Chaya Raiza
  • Esther Reva bat Malka
  • Avraham ben Rut
  • Sheva Eva bat Bella.
  • Moshe ben Rut
  • Shulkah Malka bat Tziporah
  • Chandal bat Basia
  • Shmuel Dovid bat Malka
  • Anthony Ben Devorah
  • Shayna Leah bat Yehudit
  • Reuven ben Shira
  • Batyah bat Sara
  • Rachel Tzivia bat Malka
  • Chava Golda bat Leah
  • David Yosef ben Aga
  • Layla Tzohara bat Naomi Rivkeh
  • Shimon Yaakov ben Sarah

 Wishing all Cholei Yisrael a Refuah Shlayma. 

Dear Tiferet Friends, 

If you placed a name on the Refuah Shelayma list and G-d willing the person is well, 

please let us know. Also, if you have a friend or family member who needs 

prayers for healing, again please let us know at [email protected]  

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