Omer 30: Tough Questions

Omer 30: Tough Questions

Day 30: Gevurah she’b’Hod, Boundaries of Splendour


I am God and there is none else…I form light and create darkness, I make peace, and I create evil. —Isaiah 45:5-7


Do we have to set some limits to our talk about divine splendour? Is it honest to wax poetic all the time?

As I wrote in Shechinah, Bring Me Home:

Drawing of a perplexed, stressed person leaning on a pile of books illustrating a post asking tough questions about God ad theodicy

“See how intricate nature is! How neatly ecosystems move in harmony. Obviously, there’s a great intelligence at work.” Maybe a divine one.

And as long as you see cherry blossoms through the window, this argument works. But if you see, for example, people harassing, stealing, assaulting each other, the argument fails. Because, obviously, there’s a great lack of intelligence at work.

Is this proof of the Creator’s existence, too?”


IDEAS: Do you thing that monotheism—belief in one God—means believers must hold God responsible for the good and the bad? And what might a God who creates both be like?

FEELINGS: [Trigger warning: hard question ahead.] How do you feel when you read news stories about people assaulting, displacing, threatening, murdering others?

PRACTICES: When these feelings come up, what practices do you use to turn inwards? Do you, for example, use your usual spiritual practices? Do you use them to sit with the feelings, or dissolve them, or reject them?

What practices do you use to turn outwards? Do you, for example, intensify your acts of lovingkindness? Volunteer, donate, protest, organize?

GOD: Do you feel you have a relationship with God? If so, how do you work through life’s hard things with God?


There are many ways to explore these questions. You can: Tell a story from your own life. Give an example from a book or a movie. Write a poem. Analyze a concept. Offer a definition. Draw a picture. Sing a song.

New to the Omer? Here’s a guide to the theory and practice.


  1. Beautifully said…..

    Thank you for sharing this and for each of the Omer reflections!

    1. That you so much, Mike, for the great work that you are doing in the face of these questions.

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