I recently came across a paper I wrote in rabbinical school. My theology professor Rabbi Neil Gillman, may his memory be a blessing, would ask each senior rabbinical student to describe the God they believe in. As I reread my paper, I realized that while I experience a development in each of my relationships (family, friends, community members), how little attention I have given to my evolving relationship with God. Perhaps it is time for me to revisit that assignment. How many of us take the time to evaluate our relationship with God?
An exercise you might consider: when was the last time you experienced God? What does the experience feel or look like? Some might experience God in the ways Bnai Yisrael did at the foot of Mount Sinai: A divine revelation accompanied with thunder, lightning and the blasting of shofarot. Loud, present, a visible recognition of an intervening God. A moment in which you say to yourself—this is God, I know it. Or you might experience God like Elijah: An inner voice reminding you of your purpose, encouraging you to get up and face the day. A small, still voice that may be harder to hear, but fills you with an unbridled strength. A voice you have a very hard time ignoring or pushing away.
Of course, your experiences with God may be entirely different, difficult to describe, or beyond definition. We are encouraged to check in with our loved ones, assess our relationships and even evaluate ourselves. Yet, to expect a connection with God, we must do the holy work. A spiritual check-in. A check-up: where and when does God fit in my life? What is the description of the God you believe in?
Check in with the Holy One. May your relationship with God continue to evolve, deepening your roots of faith and expanding your sense of wonder.
In partnership with The Jewish Journal, you can also find Rabbi Guzik’s blog post HERE.