As the Jewish nation prepares themselves for the huge transition of entering into Israel, Hashem zooms out and describes their journey up until this point. He describes the good times and many of the difficult times. Hashem seems to recognize their need for reassurance as they meet this unprecedented transition of moving into a more mundane existence. Gone will be the daily miracles openly witnessed. Gone will be the revealed nurturance of the manna and the well.
This is a time where there will (seem to) be more separation and distance between Hashem and the Jewish people.
And it is here that Hashem does what all attuned parents do in such moments. He reassures them of his relationship to them.
In attachments terms a caregiver has 2 main roles:
- To be a secure base to move out from – Encouraging Independence
- To be a safe haven to return home to – Welcoming Dependence
With an overview of their story together so far Hashem is recalling to them that both of these aspects of the relationship have been and will always be present:
- Independence – Hashem let’s us venture out, He believes in us, trusts us and doesn’t try to control us. In this separateness, wonderful things happened and so did horrible ones.. Some of them were painful betrayals of the relationship (which is the greatest show of trust – that you can make decisions that go AGAINST my wishes)
- Dependence – You can return home to Me, I won’t abandon you. My loving hands will still be here. I’m still here and we still have each other.
And this is the overarching goal of all parenting.
- To believe in our children’s ability to go out there and impact the world (knowing that things can and will go wrong..)
- To be a safe place for the child to return to when things are overwhelming, exhausting and painful (even if they betrayed our trust and disappointed us)
At all times we are needed in one of these 2 ways and this is especially so in challenging times of transition.