I am so looking forward to this High Holiday season for many reasons. First of all, I am thrilled to be leading my first in-person service for Chavurat Emet. But truly, I always enjoy this time of year. Yes, it involves much work and time and effort- both personally and professionally- but the sense of possibilities is what I relish the most.
Judaism has given us a great gift with these Days of Awe. True, they are times of reflection; when we look back on the past year and the consequences of our behavior this year. But, I prefer to focus on the look ahead to the coming year. What changes can be done to make our lives better and the lives of those we love? What can we look forward to? What are the possibilities that lie ahead for us?
We dip the apple in honey to wish us a sweet year ahead. Yet, both the apple and the honey are the products of much time, effort, sweat and tears. Farmers fought climate change, labor shortages, and COVID restrictions. Honey producers battled hive collapse. They persevered and here we are, literally enjoying the fruits of their efforts.
Perhaps the past year is best symbolized by the effort and angst taken to bring us these gifts of apple and honey; and the year ahead is represented by the taste smell and sweetness of these foods. In this way we can use this tasty ritual to honor the year passed but still focus on the coming year.
As we enter 5782, my wishes for all of you is a year of sweetness with your selves, your professional lives, and with your families. May we have the success and happiness we seek in health and contentment.
Shanah Tovah u’metukah,
Rabbi Marcey Wagner