From the Rabbi's Study


“Behold, I stand by a fountain of water;

… behold Rebekah came out.

-Gen 24:10-15

Living a full life demands emotional vulnerability. Allowing others to see inside our heart and souls is not always easy. In fact, many of us have been conditioned that emotions are a sign of weakness and that has caused us to stay locked inside, never really truly connecting with others. It is this refusal to be emotionally honest that deters us from embracing life in it’s fullest.


Throughout scripture the “well” is used as an image of connection, a gathering place of flowing and nourishing water in the desert where lives changed and love flourished. In Torah this week we are brought to the magical day when Abraham’s servant meets Rebekah at the well. Rebekah’s kindness leads the servant to place gold bracelets upon her and to ask her to be Isaac’s Bride. Rebekah is transparent and her simple kindness wins her a new life of love and adventure. She does not hold back her water from the stranger, but offers the water to both him and his flock.


How often do we hold back the flow of our emotions from others? Do we resist the urge for intimacy and instead settle for light chatter and surface small talk? The times of today and the message of Torah this week dictate that it is time to open our heart and allow our feelings to flow out. It is time to share our love for others without fear of abandonment and to give freely of our kindness because it makes our journey better and more authentic. Life is not meant to be lived behind the glass. Life is meant to be lived in the water splashing around, flowing and opening to new vistas of friendship and learning. It is time. Go to the well.

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Joliet Jewish Congregation

250 N. Midland Avenue

Joliet, IL  60435