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Omer Day 2: The Offering of Time

The United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism offers questions for each day's omer count. For Day 2, it is this:

"Long ago, Jews brought an omer of barley - about a quart - to the Temple each day as an offering to God. What kind of offering might you make today?" (1)

That got me thinking about what it means to make an "offering." The korban at the temporary mishkan and then at the Temple/s in Jerusalem was meant to be something special and valuable. Not enough to bankrupt you, but something to make you stop and think before you turned it over to the priests. 

Whether it was some choice flour or a prized animal, you brought something of yourself to your relationship to God, bringing yourself closer to the Holy One of Blessing as a thank-you, an atonement, or just a way to praise God.

My most precious offering today would be time. 

"When I have the time." 
"I'll get to it later." 
"Time got away from me."

Time is an odd commodity. Seemingly finite and absolute, it expands and contracts depending on the amount of time we appear to own. If it normally takes 5 minutes to empty the dishwasher, it will take 3 if we do it at the last minute, and 45 if we have all day. 

Any parent will confirm that time is the enemy of serenity: time may fly when you're having fun but it seemingly moves at warp speed when you look around and what were babies just yesterday are now your adult children on their own, making their own decisions, living (hopefully and mostly) independent from you.

Time is more valuable than money, more demanding than bringing or mailing a check to an organization. Ask any committee chairperson - they'll tell you that while financial donations are crucial, almost more critical are the people to work on projects. Human resources almost always both trump and trail behind financial and material resources. 

So my self-question today is this: how much time am I willing to sacrifice in order to honor God? 



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