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September 19, 2010 / howgood1

Ahavat Olam

The second and final introductory prayer before the recitation of the Sh’ma is Ahavat Olam.

Great is your love for Your people, the House of Israel! You have taught us Torah and Mitzvot, laws and precepts. Therfore, Adonai, our God, when we lie down and when we rise up we will meditate on Your law.

We will think of them day and night for they are the life and the length of our days. Your love will never leave from our hearts. Prasied are You Adonai, Lover of Israel.

This prayer declares our belief that G-d loves us, which is the reason why he allowed us to receive the Torah.  Just as we give gifts of great value to the people we cherish, G-d did the same when he gave us the Torah.  We promise G-d that in appreciation, we will always remember this gift, day and night, and use it as well to guide our lives.  How often do we receive wonderful gifts from our loved ones that go unused or unappreciated?  As Jews, we promise G-d that his greatest gift to us will always be remembered, which itself is a form of returning the love He gave to us.

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