A Short Shabbat Reflection from the Weekly Torah Portion by Rabbi Mark Melamut
*Bissel: (bis-sel) Yiddish. Meaning: “a little.” “Give me a bissel lox on my bagel, would you, darling?” A biselleh is even less. (www.bubbygram.com)
Parshat Va’yishlach (Genesis 32:4-36:43)
Though it’s generally good to be together with others – friends, family, community – it is also good to sometimes be alone.
We read this week, that on an evening a long time ago, Jacob took some “alone time” after helping his family and entourage across the Jabbok river.
When he was alone, we learn that he wrestled with Something all night long. The torah describes his opponent both as “a person” and as “beings divine and human.”
What did Jacob really wrestle with throughout the night? The next morning Jacob has changed. His name has become Israel and he is limping from his encounter.
In our own “alone time,” what do we wrestle with that keeps us up?
How does what we wrestle with change us?
Rabbi Mark Melamut