Al Chet

Elul 16

And for the sins for which we incur

the penalty of lashing for rebelliousness.


When reading the definition of rebelliousness as “showing a desire to resist authority or control from an established ruler,” we might think it does not apply to us. That was my thought of myself at first. Yet, when I asked Ruach to evaluate my heart and highlight any areas He thought needed to change, a disturbing feeling began to bring attention to my thoughts.


Little instances of my boss being unfair in his treatment of us employees began to come to mind and I cringed. Over time, I began to see a pattern in my thoughts that led to anger and a desire for validation and the need to be heard. A couple of times, I’m sad to say, this led to me sharing events with coworkers so that we could “understand” our individual needs to be justified.


Yet, Romans 12:1-2 gives me a very clear directive to present my body as a living sacrifice so that I can be transformed by the renewing of my mind. This required a Hebrew word I have come to love…TESHUVAH. How precious to learn that my Abba draws me to return to His heart and His ways and a beautiful redemption takes place in that, when I do, He helps me do the work of renewing my mind. This ongoing process begins to produce such shalom in my thoughts that my desire to do His will and submit to the authority He has placed over me becomes less of an effort and more of a flow. Let’s return to His heart!


El Roi, the God who sees, I thank you that You see the true state of my heart, even where I do not. I thank You that You are calling me to a higher level of purity in my life. Even what I have termed as “small offenses” in the past, You are shifting my tendency for justification, to a disdain of anything less than Your holiness. Turn my rebelliousness into teshuvah every time. May I learn to be quick to listen and quick to repent.