Counting the Omer: Day 46 — Who knows where the time goes?
By Rabbi Lisa Edwards
Today is forty-six days, making six weeks and four days of the Omer.
According to midrash (Babylonian Talmud, Shabbat 86b), today, the 2nd of Sivan (just a few days before God’s revelation at Sinai – the event we commemorate on Shavuot this coming Saturday night) is the day Moses reported to the Israelites these words which God told him to say to the house of Jacob, and the children of Israel:
“And you shall be to Me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation” (Exodus 19:6)
The mystical interpreters of the Omer count, name this 46th day of the Omer, netzach shebemalkhut which Rabbi Jill Hammer translates as the “endurance of the kingdom”
All these generations after the revelation at Sinai, after God said you shall be a holy nation, and after the people answered together, “all that God has spoken, we will do,” (Ex 19:8) do we, God’s people, continue to preserve ourselves as a holy nation? Do we let this “kingdom” endure? And individually, do we work to preserve our own “nobility,” and our own endurance?
At day 46 of noting each day, of noting time passing, do we remain strong in our willingness to reflect, or are we wearing down, wearied by the attention to time passing?
I was reminded today of a song popular in the 1960s — “Who knows where the time goes?” written by Sandy Denny (Fairport Convention), covered by Judy Collins, Eva Cassidy, Nina Simone, among others (on the theme of this song: of these 4 amazing women singers, only Judy Collins is still alive. Thanks to modern technology, and human appreciators, we can still listen to all of their beautiful voices).
As we draw near the end of our Omer counting and daily reflection, I invite us to continue to look for ways to take note of time passing, and the many gifts that really taking in the passage of time might bring.
Thank you for joining us for these 7 weeks of reflecting, questioning, learning together. I leave you with a musical gift: Four versions of “Who Knows Where the Time Goes?”