exodus 12v2 - aviv nisan

Aviv (Nisan)

Aviv is the month of new beginnings. Exodus tells us that it is the beginning of the year. Like how we have different “new years” in our Gregorian calendar (financial new year, new year by year, school year, etc.), there are several new years in the Bible as well. My understanding is that here we start the spiritual new year, and the new year for the feasts calendar.

Aviv is a good opportunity to ponder our beginnings, specifically when we first started our relationship with Hashem. How did He bring you personally out of slavery and into freedom?

Because this is the start of the year, lets take some time to look at the coming year as a whole. Mark each feast or fast day in your calendar, and make a plan for how you intend to celebrate them. Ask for time off work if necessary, and even organise your budget so you have money saved to enjoy the feasts! Even consider the weekly Shabbats, and monthly Rosh Chodesh – how are you called to remember these times, and honour G-d?

This month we celebrate Passover, First Fruits and the Feast of Matzah. We are reminded over and over in this month of the story of the Hebrews leaving Egypt, and how G-d cared for them and faithfully lead them out of slavery and into Freedom. Even in slavery they praised G-d, and trusted Him.

Each month there are different Middot assigned to the month, and this month they are chesed (loving kindness), faithfulness, and loyalty. How can you work on these characteristics?
What does it look like (practically) for you to show loving kindness?
What does it look like (practically) for you to show faithfulness?
What does it look like (practically) for you to show loyalty?

How has G-d shows his chesed (loving kindness), faithfulness, and loyalty to you? What area of your life need a new beginning? Pray for renewal in these areas.

children felt passer seder plate

Clearing the Chametz

During, and in the lead up to Passover Chametz (leaven) represents sin. As we clean out our homes of all the chametz lets pray about what chametz is in our life that G-d wants us to pay attention to and clean out.Do we have any chametz in our relationships that we need to work through?
Do we have any chametz in the form of things we need to submit to G-d? Things we aren’t trusting him to look after (worrying about), or things we want to control.
Do we have any chametz in the form of our mental state, including our emotions? Things we need to repent of and move forward from?

Exodus 12:23 says Adonai himself will pass over your door to be with you and not allow the slaughterer to enter your home and kill you. How does it feel to know that Adonai is with you – in your house, fighting for you, and protecting you? 
Considering using this as a drawing or art journal prompt as you ponder this.