A Bisl Torah

The Road to Hana

Ten years ago, Erez and I took our honeymoon in Maui. As part of the week’s excursions, we drove the road to Hana. As explained, the road to Hana includes many breathtaking views, waterfalls, spots to pause and recognize God’s beauty. But repeatedly, the guidebooks warn: The road to Hana is not about getting to Hana. The road to Hana is about enjoying the journey.

Erez and I didn’t heed the warning. We were anxious to see what Hana was; where the road would end. And we were deeply disappointed. Instead of really taking in each sight, we rushed the drive and left the excursion feeling as if we entirely missed the point.

Ten years later…Erez and I just spent four glorious days in Maui with ATID and 90 Jewish young professionals. It was an opportunity for the young professionals to meet each other, discover Jewish avenues of spirituality in one of the most picturesque places in the world, and disconnect from the chaos of their lives. But many of them told us, “We are driving to Hana.” Our eyes lit up, realizing we could save them from our previous mistake! We said over and over again, “Enjoy the ride. Stop often. Don’t worry about Hana.” But we knew, even with advice given, it would be their journey to experience, not ours.

I am taking this lesson to heart. Ten years since our honeymoon. Ten years since becoming a rabbi. And I try to remind myself—it isn’t about where my rabbinate will take me. It isn’t about where I will end up as a wife or mother. It is about the journey and relishing each moment. The moments where I help a congregant feel closer to God or connect with a congregant during celebration or sorrow. The moments where I lock eyes with my husband, laughing after one of our kids spills their milk or says something that rocks our souls. The moments in which I take a breath and thank God, for this majestic road to travel.

We all have many life goals, ambitions, hopes and dreams. Let us not lose sight of the true wonder we experience along the way.

Shabbat Shalom

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