You know you are in the middle of Spring when Macon’s Cherry Blossom trees are in bloom and pollen is wafting through the air! This is the month for April showers to bring on those May flowers as the saying goes! The rain is needed and is a reminder of how all living things need water. A few water facts: Somewhere between 70 and 75 percent of our earth’s surface is covered with water. Roughly 70 percent of an adult’s body is made up of water. The United States uses over 400 billion gallons of fresh water every day. We are indeed blessed to have this precious liquid at the turn of a faucet. In contrast, for millions of poor women around the world in places like Ethiopia, this means endless miles of walking daily to carry water for their families. We are talking around 50 pounds strapped to their backs. Truly water is more precious than gold when it comes to life. We could all learn from Israel, a country that leads the world in water conservation. I recently read a statistic that 80% of household water is recycled in Israel! That’s far and away more than any other country in the world. Reclaiming or recycling water is so vital for this important resource.
Also at this time of year, there is another recycling of sorts or more specifically… a retelling. This is the story of Passover. Every year, beloved and often worn Haggadot make their way out of storage and onto the Pesach table. The story is retold each year at this festival that commemorates the exodus of the Israelites from Egypt. Why is there such a strong emphasis on telling the Passover story? In Exodus, we are commanded to commemorate the Festival of Unleavened Bread for generations to come. Haggadah means “the telling” and as we “recycle” this story each Passover we are reminded that we once were slaves like our ancestors but now are free. Sadly, many in the world still are not free. The salt water on our Passover table reminds us of the tears and sweat of enslavement. Like the precious rainwater that renews our earth at Springtime, Pesach makes us aware each year to never to take our equally precious freedoms for granted. May Passover 2016 find you sharing the Seder meal and your presence with family, friends and grateful “extra” guests. Let the experience of retelling this ancient story of our Jewish heritage renew your spirit like a gentle, cleansing springtime rain.