To Pray as a Jew: A Guide to the Prayer Book and the Synagogue Service

To Pray as a Jew: A Guide to the Prayer Book and the Synagogue Service

To Pray as a Jew: A Guide to the Prayer Book and the Synagogue Service

To Pray as a Jew: A Guide to the Prayer Book and the Synagogue Service

Excerpt

In is true that at times I pray only because it is my duty to obey the Jewish law that requires me to pray. But there are also times that I pray because I sincerely want to pray. These are the tirnes when I want to reach out and talk to my Father in Heaven, to my Maker, the Holy One, blessed be He. These are the times when I want to cry out to the Supreme Being, to communicate with Him in a way that I can communicate with no one else. I cannot see Him, but He is real. He is there!

Such moments come to me only occasionally, but they come. Sometimes it is when I am in distress or when I feel lonely and isolated from all the world. Sometimes it is when I feel anxious about the safety or health of loved ones, or when my people are being threatened. At such moments my cry is likely to be accompanied by a shed tear, a pained heart, a feeling of despair. Sometimes it is when a great sense of relief comes over me, or when truly joyous news exhilarates me and makes me ecstatic. Then my cry is apt to be accompanied by a sense of exuberance and by a feeling of gratefulness. Whether God will accept my prayers and affirmatively respond to them, I do not know. That He hears my prayers, I firmly believe!

If I did not regularly pray out of a sense of obligation to pray, I

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