I will never forget the first time I was able to daven after my daughter’s birth. When I was able to hold the siddur in my hands once again, on the second Shabbat of my daughter’s life, I found myself reaching out to a different God than ever before. I found myself talking not to an image of God as the God of law and command and blame. I called out to God as the giver of life, the God of mothers and children, of love and care and nourishment, a God who would understand that there was sanctity in nursing and diaper changing and rocking and comforting as surely there was sanctity in my encounter with the siddur. That night, for the first time in my life, I encountered a feminine image of God, who rejoiced in the birth of my daughter and my own rebirth as a mother. This is a gift that will be with me forever.
- Amy Eilberg
(first woman ordained by the Conservative movement)
From “The Gifts of First Fruits,” a sermon
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