River of Blood, Hearts of Tears

In light of the recent violence on the national scene, Federation asked the rabbis of Greater Metrowest New Jersey to provide their latest divrei torah, drashot, or other insights on the situation. The views and opinions expressed in this post are those of the author alone and do not necessarily represent those held by Federation.   Dialogue and debate are positive and necessary methods to promote change.   As such, we hope you can find comfort and guidance in the words of our spiritual leaders.  


Rivers of Blood, Hearts of Tears

By Rabbi Debra Smith

Spiritual Leader, Or Ha Lev Jewish Renewal Congregation, Succasunna

July 11, 2016- 6 tammuz, 5776

Eternal One!

We call out to You!

We gaze at rivers of blood in our streets

And our hearts cry bitter tears.

Eternal One!

We pray for Your children of all faiths and races

Let them play where bullets do not fall as rain and there are no rivers of blood

We pray for parents  

Let them be safe in their workplaces and on their daily travels

Eternal One!

We pray for all our brothers and sisters

Let them offer the world the best of who they are

Let them learn the best that others have to offer

Let us join forces to achieve a common goal: Peace in our lifetimes.

Eternal One!

Embrace Your children; hold us close

When we peer into the faces of the other, let us see ourselves

Let us see the world through compassionate eyes and caring hearts

Eternal One! 

Stop the rives of blood in our streets

Stop the bitter tears flowing from our hearts.

Eternal One!

Help us in our search for shalom and shleimut:  for a world and a heart that is whole.


Rabbi Debra Smith
Founder and Spiritual Leader
Or Ha Lev Jewish Renewal Congregation


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