Friday, February 28, 2014

Mission Accomplished

29 Adar I 5774 / Feb 28 – March 1, 2014

In this week’s portion, Pekudei, we wrap up the Book of Exodus and learn that the Israelites have finished constructing the Tabernacle. We find an accounting of how much gold and silver were used in its construction and learn that all of the ritual objects and garments had been completed as well. We also learn the results of the recent census (603,550 males over age 20). Upon the completion of the Tabernacle, Moses blesses the nation.

This action by Moses strikes me. What cause was there for a blessing to be offered? The Israelites had simply completed a project they had been assigned…

Too often in life we don’t carve out the necessary time to acknowledge and reflect upon our accomplishments. When we complete large-scale projects, we’re often so focused on moving on to whatever is next that we fail to pause and take stock of where we were when the project began and how far we’ve come and developed during the time it took us to complete it. Moses, in blessing the nation, essentially provides the space for the Israelites to reflect on and bask in their collective efforts.

Reflect on the following:

Am I making the time to acknowledge my completion of major tasks? 

What would it look like for me to create a regular time to reflect on my personal growth?

Can I help create space and time for others to reflect on their accomplishments? 

Traditionally, when we finish reading a book of the Torah, we say “chazak chazak v’nitchazek” – “be strong, be strong, and may we be strengthened.”

This Shabbat, let’s remember that while going from strength to strength, and from project to project, that it’s important to make the time to reflect on the recently completed experience.

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