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The Brightness of the Dawn

We forget that bright paths are often first submerged in darkness.
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November 12, 2021
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Some of you remember the post I shared about our lemon trees. For almost a year, the lemons were a dark, rich green. We started to believe we were actually sold lime trees by mistake. And as I wrote a few months ago, the “limes” finally started to offer a slight shade of yellow. That Bisl Torah was about patience, letting something grow in its own time.

But today I share a lesson in forgetting. Those once light greenish pieces of fruits are now a deep vibrant gold. There are dozens of lemons, ready to be enjoyed. The tree is starting to bend, indicating that it’s time to use the harvest we have planted. But with the brightness of our bounty, I forget how often we doubted these little trees. How many times we shook our heads assuming it wouldn’t bear fruit. How often we thought it was a lost cause. We laughed, thinking that to see anything different would be impossible. And yet, now we sip tart lemonade and marvel at the saffron hues adorning the yard.

We forget that bright paths are often first submerged in darkness. The heaviness of a night so heavy it’s hard to breathe. Ask any mother after giving birth. The miracle of the baby before them often clouds the pains of labor. When tomorrow is here, yesterday feels far away.

The Talmud offers Rabbi Yosei’s definition of twilight. He says, “Twilight is like the blink of an eye; night begins and the day ends and the time between them is so brief, it is impossible to quantify.” Meaning, often we are plunged into darkness forgetting the light that came before and likewise, we bask in light forgetting the darkness that felt so very suffocating.

Whatever the darkness you feel, don’t forget: lemonade might not be too far away. And for those enjoying your harvest, be mindful of those that can’t see through the shadows of the night. We journey together and I pray the path is brighter for all.

Shabbat Shalom


Rabbi Nicole Guzik is a rabbi at Sinai Temple. She can be reached at her Facebook page at Rabbi Nicole Guzik. For more writings, visit Rabbi Guzik’s blog section from Sinai Temple’s website.

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