Counting the Omer: A Spiritual Journey ~ Take Two

Last month, I introduced you to Rabbi Karyn Kedar’s book, Omer: A Counting, which provides a framework of purpose, intention, and attention for a journey that the counting of the Omer offers. Rabbi Kedar offers seven spiritual themes, or principles, for each of the weeks of the Omer: Decide, Discern, Choose, Hope, Imagine, Courage, and Pray.

Introducing this week’s theme—Courage– Rabbi Kedar writes:

“Courage to live. Courage to love. Courage to risk. Courage to fail. And patience. It takes time to become the person we want to be, to grow and unfold, to fail and persevere. There is a vastness between what is possible and what is real; an expanse of uncertainty, ambiguity, and doubt. When we are afraid, we are paralyzed, suspended in midair between imagination and manifestation. It is the natural course of things to have our dreams lay fallow; only care and determination make the ground rich and ready to bear fruit. When we see our limitations as failure, we are afraid. Be brave and step into your life.”

At the end of the daily readings for Courage, there is a prayer which I’d like to share with you: It begins with these words from Psalm 55:7-9:

And I said:
O if only I had wings like the dove
I would fly away and find a restful abode.
I would wander afar while hastening
to find a haven from the stormy tempest.
And so I pray
that my spirit have the strength to soar
that my heart have the courage to seek,
and my mind the wisdom to discover,
a life of meaning and purpose.

Grant me, O Gd,
Strength,
Courage,
And wisdom.

It is traditional to count the Omer at night so that we have the full force of the endeavor. The blessing can be found HERE. Tonight begins the 40th day of the Omer which is 5 weeks and 4 days of the Omer.

Kol Tuv ~ Rabbi

Rabbi Kedar’s book is published by the CCAR Press. It’s available in paper-back as well as a pdf on the CCAR Press website.