Beha’alotcha, Numbers 8:1-12:16, Parshat Hashavua for Shabbat, June 18, 2022

Dear Congregants, by mistake I missed parashat Naso, the Torah portion for last week and wrote about this week’s Torah portion, Beha’alotecha. I am rerunning it this week to stay up with the weekly cycle of Torah readings.
What would it mean to experience God’s presence in our lives? How would we know? In this week’s Torah portion, “On the day that the Tabernacle was set up, the cloud covered the Tabernacle, the Tent of the Pact; and in the evening it rested over the Tabernacle in the likeness of fire until morning. And whenever the cloud lifted from the Tent, the Israelites would set out accordingly; and at the spot where the cloud settled, there the Israelites would make camp.” (Numbers 9:15-17)
For the ancient Israelites, God was present as a cloud by day and a fire by night. When the cloud hovered over the Tabernacle the Israelites camped, when it lifted they moved on.
Perhaps our decisions would be easier if we had such a clear sign from God. But unfortunately we don’t. When we have a difficult decision to make we cannot look outward for a sign, we must look inward, quietly and try to discern the still small voice that resides within us.
When we do we may find guidance, for God is within us, not outside us.