Counting the Omer: day 4

Count for this day in the evening of the date listed above.

Counting the Omer began the second night of Passover, which was on April 9, 2020. The last day of counting is May 27, 2020.

You can learn more about the history and practice of counting the Omer here.

day 4: qualities of focus

The Omer, week 1, focus on loving-kindness

The first week of the Omer is focused on loving-kindness (chesed).

The fourth day of the week is focused on endurance, and successful movement toward a good outcome (netzach).

This day is focused on endurance, and on enhancing loving-kindness in our world and lives.

the blessing for counting the Omer

It’s traditional to say a blessing each evening, followed by reciting which day of which week it is in the Omer journey. Here’s the blessing in English, feminized Hebrew, and the traditional masculine Hebrew. Use whichever Hebrew and/or English versions work for you!

English version of the blessing

Blessed are you, Eternal One-ness, Source and Breath of All Life, that has made us holy with your mitzvot, and compels us to count the Omer.

If you prefer feminine God language in Hebrew:

בְּרוּכָה אַתְּ יָהּ אֱלֹהֵינוּ רוּחַ הָעוֹלָם אֲשֶׁר קִדְּשָׁנוּ בִּמְצַוְּתָהּ וְצִוָּנוּ עַל סְפִירַת הָעֹמֶר

B’rukhah at Yah Eloheynu khay ha’olamim asher kideshatnu bemitzvoteha vetzivatnu al sefirat ha’omer.

If you prefer masculine God language, or just like the traditional way of saying the blessing:

בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה אֲדֹנָי אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם אֲשֶׁר קִדְּשָׁנוּ בְּמִצְוֹתָיו וְצִוָּנוּ עַל סְפִירַת הָעֹמֶר

Baruch ata adonai, eloheynu melech ha-olam, asher kidshanu b’mitzvotav vitzivanu al sefirat ha-omer.

The practice: bless, count the Omer, reflect, repeat.

today is…

Each morning, I’ll post the blessing, and which day of the Omer is being counted next (after sunset that day.)

Here’s today’s count, in Hebrew (transliterated), and English.

Ha-yom arba-ah yamim la-omer.

“Today is the fourth day of the Omer.”

Let me know if this gets confusing, or you have any questions. I’ve never done this before via blog post, and need your help to make sure everything works.

prefer Hebrew script?

If you prefer to read the blessing in Hebrew, check out this app.

Or look in your favorite siddur (prayer book). It can often be found at the end of the evening service.

today’s poetic meditation

Evoking the Tree of Life during the Omer

I’m posting a poetic meditation for each day to enhance the journey. Each meditation is focused on the kabbalistic qualities (sefirot) associated with the day.

Some people like to read the meditations when they say the blessing at night. Others like to contemplate them in the morning to provide spiritual nourishment for the day’s activities.

Experiment, and see what works for you!

netzach b’chesed: endurance within loving-kindness

A Muslim man
in Jerusalem
has devoted himself
to healing deep fissures
in his region.

Muslims, Jews,
and Christians,
Buddhist monks,
Hindu devotees,
Native American shamans:
he welcomes and
brings us all
to his home.

His wife gives us tea
shares food with us.

He and his
partners for peace
travel the world,
climbing the rocky
pathways of

Healing relationships
can take time,

What relationship
would you like
to see healed?
What partnerships
might you forge,
what rifts
can you help mend
in our troubled world?

What is the first step
you can take,
toward tikkun olam,
the healing and
of the world we know now
to one that is more
loving and just?

It may be
a tiny shift you make
in your most
intimate circle,
or a simple
gesture of caring
for the world around you.

Make yourself a promise
to stay in it
for the duration.

Take a stand, and a step
through the 4th gate.

copyright Shifrah Tobacman, 2012

Prefer to hold a book in your hand?

You might be interested in Rabbi Shifrah’s collection Omer/Teshuvah: 49 Poetic Meditations for Counting the Omer or Turning Toward a New Year. Write to

Poetic meditations on the Omer from Rabbi Shifrah

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Countdown to Rosh HaShanah: we’ve arrived!

Omer HaTeshuvah: turning mindfully from grief to renewal leadng up to Rosh HaShanah.

Countdown to Rosh HaShanah: Day 2

Omer HaTeshuvah: turning mindfully from grief to renewal leadng up to Rosh HaShanah.

Countdown to Rosh HaShanah: Day 3

Omer HaTeshuvah: turning mindfully from grief to renewal leadng up to Rosh HaShanah.

Countdown to Rosh HaShanah: Day 4

About Rabbi Shifrah


I’m a rabbi, holistic teacher, interfaith chaplain, end of life doula, and poet. I have a healer’s spirit, and am dedicated to social, economic, and environmental justice. I live in Emeryville, CA with my beloved wife Ruth, with whom I’ve been happily partnered for over twenty-two years.

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