That was my fortune today with my orange/sweet and sour chicken from Panda Express. So here I am, sitting outside attempting to make friends with other students in the little quad area of the graduate housing complex. I suppose that's a start, eh?
CHEERFUL COMPANY AND A MERRY TIME ARE AHEAD FOR YOU.
Rabbi Marc D. Angel's new novel The Search Committee. I also somehow stumbled upon Chabad.org's nifty Jewish birthday calculator. In fact, I think it's pretty awesome that my Jewish birthday is 23 Tishrei, and the Torah portion is Bereishit -- the first parshah of the Jewish year! And my "normal" calendar birthday, September 30, is the first day of Rosh Hashanah this year. That's new beginnings, fresh starts, like a rebirth of sorts, and I think that's so appropriate considering my path and how I got here and where I've ended up.Throw that into how I'm starting a new leg to my journey in life and wow, beautiful happenstance all around.
So a few words on this week's portion, Eikev, which is Deut. 7:12-11:25. Right off the bat, Moses is saying that only if the Israelites heed the commandments and laws of G-d will they really be taken care of.
And it will be, because you will heed these ordinances and keep them and perform, that the Lord, your God, will keep for you the covenant and the kindness that He swore to your forefathers. (7:12)But then, Moses says:
Do not say to yourself, when the Lord, your God, has repelled them from before you, saying, "Because of my righteousness, the Lord has brought me to possess this land," and [that] because of the wickedness of these nations, the Lord drives them out from before you.
Not because of your righteousness or because of the honesty of your heart, do you come to possess their land, but because of the wickedness of these nations, the Lord your God drives them out from before you, and in order to establish the matter that the Lord swore to your forefathers, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. You shall know that, not because of your righteousness, the Lord, your God, gives you this land to possess it; for you are a stiffnecked people. (9:4-6)