One of the most interesting Grateful Dead tunes is “The Wheel.” It’s interesting musically and lyrically. It contains the lyric, “If the thunder don’t get ya then the lightning will.” Definitely a worldview expressed in that line!
I thought of “The Wheel” last night when my family and I experienced an magnificent thunder storm while leading a Shabbat service outside. Once the thunder and lightning started coming down my almost 4 year old daughter became hysterically and inconsolably scared. Witnessing her fear and experiencing my own powerlessness to comfort her in that moment was profound. Eventually we made it home at which point she collapsed in exhaustion.
Whenever I hear “The Wheel” I’ll think of Shabbat in the middle of that thunderstorm and my daughter’s sweet and heartbreaking fear of thunder and lightning.