“It is a tree of life for those who grasp it, and all who uphold it are blessed. Its ways are pleasantness, and all its paths are peace. Help us to turn to You, and we shall return. Renew our lives as in days of old.” -Siddur Sim Shalom, pg 427
These are the words that are sung as the Torah, the first five books of the Bible, are returned to the Torah Ark, or Aron HaKodesh, the special cabinet where the Torah scrolls are kept. The Word of God, the Torah, is the Tree of Life, and all who uphold it are blessed and walk in the ways of peace. After yesterday’s murders in Pittsburgh, and the shooting in Louisville on Thursday, I am left praying this prayer, especially the part where we ask God to help us turn back and to be renewed.
May we grasp the tree of life and seek the paths of pleasantness and peace to which God has called us.