Parshat Pekudei: An Open Account

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05 Mar 2008
Arts & Media

These are the accounts


Let me give you an account

(Though it is not a bank account

It is an account you can bank on)

Of a people, individuals who were

Accounted for.


An account, an open account, of an

Oasis in the desert, a home made with

Mundane material but of a Divine nature,

A resting place big enough to contain a

World; small enough to contain a cry.


It is the most awesome of feats, creating

Spirit out of matter, it is perhaps the greatest

Accomplishment of all. But like anything

Great it is made with – and of – the finest detail.


Small things:

Seemingly insignificant things,

Things that may not hold press conferences

Or precedent; things that may not make headlines

Or bottom lines. Things like hooks, shekels, copper,

Skins, stones, colors, carpentry, angles, measurements:

Different shapes and different sizes –



It takes many individual efforts to break common ground

Or fix an uncommon world


To see the bigger picture you have to focus the smallest pixels


Ability & Accountability:

We have the ability, the ability to do our little part;

So we are accountable, accountable to the One

That counts most.


Don’t dwell on it –

Dwell in it


Don’t dwell on the challenges –

Dwell in the moment

And let the moment dwell in you.


The dwelling is built:

It is time to begin, time to end –

To end one journey and begin another.


Of beginnings and ends:


And these are the names of the Children of Israel

Who came to Egypt…


…And a fire will be in it at night

Visible to the Children of Israel throughout all their journeys


There is a structure that takes us way beyond structure, a dwelling

Place that dwells within every one of us – and a fire will be in it

Even in the darkest night, in the coldest wilderness,

Through forty-two journeys and a million ups and downs,

No matter where life takes us or where we take it,

The fire will be in it, will burn, and light our



We have come from afar

We are going further yet.


It may be the end of Exodus

But it is only the beginning of our journey.


Be strong! Be strong! And may we be strengthened!


Chazak Chazak V’nitchazek

Mendel Jacobson is a writer, poet and journalist living in Brooklyn. His weekly poetry can be seen at

The words of this author reflect his/her own opinions and do not necessarily represent the official position of the Orthodox Union.