Given everything that has gone on in the world, not just this week, but over the past several months, it’s all too easy to focus only on the negative.
This being said, I end this week feeling blessed.
The destruction in Texas is unfathomable. But, thanks to the incredible Molina family – residents of Plantation who activated an amazing response to this destruction, many of us were able to get involved in the relief effort. The Molinas got tractor trailers, an RV and other trucks, and using social media, spread the word that they were collecting supplies for those affected by Harvey. Hundreds of us brought supplies to their home in Plantation Acres. We helped load the supplies onto the RV, the trucks and the trailers. Late yesterday, the caravan began its journey to the Houston area. I’ve been able to connect a few folks who are involved in the relief efforts in Texas to the Molina family, who will be arriving in Conroe, Texas on Shabbat. The Molinas gave us the ability to feel helpful. They empowered us – giving us the opportunity to make a difference. I am so grateful for them.
As I helped load the trucks early yesterday morning and watched car after car arrive with donations at the Molina’s home, I was truly overwhelmed by the goodness, by the love, by the compassion that I was witnessing. It was absolutely incredible, and it reminded me of the power that we have, if we come together, to make this world a better place.
On Wednesday night, many of you who attended our Pre-High Holiday Book Club at Ramat Shalom donated supplies for the Molina caravan. We were discussing A Man Called Ove. During our discussion, we brought up a line in the book: “We can busy ourselves with living or with dying. We have to move on.” We have to live. This line captures a valuable Jewish lesson in the Torah: “I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse. You shall choose life” (Deut. 30:19). We must pursue blessings.
Because of the darkness of Hurricane Harvey, I was so fortunate to have found myself surrounded by the blessing that is a truly caring community.
Yes, the world is broken. But, yes, the world is filled with goodness. As we get ready to welcome a new year, let’s commit to finding ways to work together to strengthen this goodness, share it and make it a central part of each of our lives.
May the goodness continue in Texas as the hard work of emptying the truck and getting it to waiting arms.