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Dear Passover, by Andi Caldwell (Unsent Letters Religion Theme)

Dear Passover,

I know I’m supposed to be very busy preparing for this holiday, but I’ve had a little setback this year. Usually, at this time, I would be busy shopping and chopping and preparing and cooking and freezing and setting tables and getting out the fancy china and silverware, etc. But since my accident, I am unable to do any of those things.

My children have offered to do the majority of the work, but that is unrealistic. And so I asked myself, what does this holiday really mean to me. Passover has always meant freedom and spring.

According to the laws of Moses, we are supposed to treat this holiday as if we, ourselves, were set free from Pharaoh in Egypt. We are supposed to believe that for the first time in our lives, we are now free to direct our own destiny, free to observe our own religion and worship God in our own way.

To celebrate this holiday, we observe the mitzvah of the Haggadah. This book tells the story of Passover. Included in it are the rituals we perform at a Passover Seder, like dipping parsley in salt water to remind us of the tears our ancestors shed, while being enslaved. We eat matzoh to remind us that our ancestors fled Egypt so quickly that they did not have time for the bread to rise so they ate it flat.

We drink 4 cups of wine to remind us that God gives us great bounty and the joy of being alive.

But this year, I have been injured. I broke both my arms, and I cannot prepare for Passover. Instead of being freed, I feel caged and trapped. So I asked myself, what meaning God could have to enslave me during the season of Passover. Here is my answer. God has freed me from the ritual so that I may dwell on the meaning of being free. When I get my arms back, I will go back to my regular routine. I think God wants me to think about that and perhaps free me from what I was previously doing. Maybe it’s time for a change. Maybe it’s time to free myself from a way of life that has become stale.

It’s true that I have been freed from my workload. I can’t do laundry or dishes or shopping. I can’t make the beds or cook dinner. I need to accept help in areas where I never needed help before. So in a way, I do have a type of freedom and the time to explore what I really want to do. I pray that God will lead me to the answer I seek. I pray for strength and courage to be able to follow my dreams. I pray for humility and the ability to accept help from other caretakers.

So this Passover, when we ask the eternal question, “Why is this night different from all other nights?” I hope I will have the answer. Not the traditional, “We were slaves in Egypt,” but I was a slave to my life. Now I am free. Now it is spring.

Happy Passover, Passover. May this season fill you with joy, the love of God, and peace.

Andi Caldwell

~~~

Andi Caldwell is a freelance writer, fiction author and history teacher. She is a long-time member of the Center for Independent Study, a group that supports independent scholarship. She and her husband share a home with two cats  in New England.

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5 Responses to “Dear Passover, by Andi Caldwell (Unsent Letters Religion Theme)”

  1. Dreamweaverr says:

    Sometimes it takes a jolt to make us realize the real depth of meaning behind events that are important to us as people and indivduals. Blessings often come in odd disguises. This was lovely, Andi.

  2. Angel says:

    What a wonderful letter, Andi. I think you are right with your thinking. I hope you find the answers you seek.

  3. Gillian says:

    Really positive take on what you have been through as it applies to your beliefs. Great letter.

  4. Borgieskid says:

    So sorry about your accident, but I agree with you. This is the time to think about the real meaning of Passover.. and life.

  5. What a wonderful way to look at a not-wonderful situation. Beautiful, Andi.

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