Parashat Lech Lecha
The Lord said to Avram, “Go forth (lech-lecha)… Gen 12:1
My teacher Aviva Zornberg has pointed out that Avram’s journey to Canaan is the first “voluntary” exile in the Torah-a journey taken by the traveler for a specific personal purpose.
Adam and Cain both were sent on journeys as punishment. These journey’s were involuntary and forced. Avram sets out on his journey to follow the call of God and for the purpose of spiritual growth.
Life often brings upon us involuntary journeys. No one asks to be let go from their job, experience illness, get in a car accident. All of us go on these unwanted journeys. The Torah portion tells us that some journeys can be chosen-like Avram, we should take advantage of those moments and opportunities for growth and spiritual advancement.