Parshat Lekh Lekha recounts the journey of Avram, Sarai, and their family from Ur in Mesopotamia to the unknown land to which God led them. Lekh Lekha means “go for yourself.”   Avram and Sarai were destined to become the forefather and foremother of new nations, but their first prerogative was to take a spiritual journey for their own sake. Last week we held our first Adult Education evening at Heschel with Connected Parenting Coach Cindy Smolkin. We learned that to be our best selves as parents and teachers, we need to look inside and reflect on our thoughts, emotions, and trigger points. We learned that when children act out or are in distress, the best way to begin helping is for parents to seek counselling. We need to go on our own journey of self-learning to help our children and students learn. Avram and Sarai’s journey entailed leaving the rigidity and habits of the Mesopotamian way of life; it required from them cognitive, emotional, and spiritual flexibility. Likewise, for us, as parents and teachers, we learn and improve when we can let of go of habitual patterns that don’t work; when we can be flexible, open, and responsive to those in our care. Torah teaches that Avram and Sarai “made souls” in the city of Haran – others whom they gathered with them on their journey. The souls that we make are the souls of our children. The spiritual journey we take for ourselves is a model for them. As A.J. Heschel has taught, only those who have travelled the path to the promised land can guide others there.

Shabbat Shalom,

Moreh Greg