Modah ani l’fanecha,
Ruach chai v’kayam
She’hechazarta bi nishmati b’chemla,
Raba Emunatecha

The Modah Ani reads, “I give thanks before you eternal God, for You have returned within me my soul with compassion; abundant is Your faithfulness!”

Over the past six weeks, there have been times where many of us have perhaps struggled to feel anything outside of worry, fear, and stress. The Coronavirus pandemic has changed our world dramatically. We may know of someone with the virus, or of someone who lost their battle with it. Others may live in a constant state of fear that they or a loved one will contract it. Hundreds of thousands of people have lost their jobs. Business owners have been forced to make tough decisions regarding layoffs and the potential long-term financial impact they themselves are facing.

When I think about these things, it can become overwhelming. It is then I remember the Modah Ani. Despite the fact that our world is in the middle of this storm, I have so much to feel grateful for ~ the health of my sisters, good friends, extended family, colleagues, and fellow community members. I am grateful for the Dayton Jewish community, and the strength we have exuded during this difficult time. I am thankful for the creativity of our staff and lay leaders, in finding new and innovative ways to stay connected and provide meaningful content for all ages, from infants to seniors.

Most of all, I am grateful to wake up each day with a sense of generosity, receptiveness, and love. When I make a conscience effort to be grateful, I feel a deeper connection to my faith, and a deeper appreciation for the amazing people in my life. I also find that I am in better spirits, and am able to tackle any obstacles I face with much more clarity and resolve. This all makes perfect sense, as studies have shown that when we are grateful, it can change one’s psychology and provide incredible mental health benefits.

As we prepare to celebrate Shabbat, I want to take a moment to express my gratitude for each and every one of you, our incredible Dayton Jewish community. Your insight, guidance, and patience have made this past six weeks much easier to navigate. For that, I am eternally grateful.

Shabbat Shalom.



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