God challenges Abram (later, named Abraham) to go forth from his native land to a land that God will show him. This is one of the great challenges of all time. What might God’s appeal to Abram mean to us?
To go forth to this new land may, in Hebrew, mean “to go for yourself” (this can lead to what you can become); it may mean “to go with yourself” (this can lead to finding your true self); or it may mean “to go by yourself” (this can lead to developing and exhibiting the courage of going it alone in a meritorious way).
In the Bible, specifically, we see powerful ways in which the response of Abram to this call plays out in his times. But, even more, our patriarch shows all descendants of faith, including us, remarkable effects of the power “to go forth” in all times, including:
1) The emergence of a person who will contribute to family, people, and ultimately a society, that promotes the way of God;
2) The departure from “the predictable, the unfree, delimited” to become a leader among people in a manner that transcends attachment purely to the material (the idols of any age) to be true to God and God’s expectations (Sacks);
3) The start of an epic journey in search of God’s ways and truths – especially those grounded in justice, righteousness, and loving kindness;
4) The move to responsibility and maturity in how we live our lives, especially as we leave the home of our parents;
5) The discovery of new and better ways of fulfilling God’s will through taking on a higher level of service to God and our fellow men and women; and
6) The taking on of a risk to do something in faith that is both right and bold.
Lech lecha! Go forth to the land God will show you, and you will be blessed.