Shabbat: I Like Your Love
We started doing Friday night Shabbat dinners a while ago around here. Michael, my five year old, came home from his first year in Jewish Sunday school asking me why we don't celebrate Shabbat, and since I didn't have an answer, we do now. Michael also insits most Fridays that we invite someone, "because Shabbat should be shared Mommy. My teacher said so." (Remind me to investigate exactly what is being taught at the synagogue we belong to.) I'm through my Jewish friends and am going to move on to my non-Jewish friends soon.
I grumble, because he has swim lessons on Friday night, and I spend Fridays at the grocery store and picking up challah and cleaning the house and getting a nice dinner together that I can throw in the oven as soon as we get home, but in the end, I'm always glad we do it. We sit down and light candles and say the blessings and have a relaxed dinner. We don't let Michael run off and play the minute he finishes dinner. We sit and talk.
My husband Doug started this tradition where we all have to say something we like about each other. (My non-Jewish husband is so lovely about these things and how much more observant we have become. He didn't exactly sign up for Friday night Shabbat dinners.) This week Michael looked at me and said, "I like your love."
And I melted. And we will now have Shabbat until the end of time. Because I get the purpose now. It forces us to sit down, stop moving, and appreciate everything around us for 30 minutes. And even though we have family dinner every stinkin' night in this house, Friday night is different. We have dessert. Michael knows he isn't just getting up the minute he is done eating. There is no homework, play, shower, bed, rush. We connect, through candlelight and challah.
Thank you Michael for making us do it. I like your love too.