Pesukei D’Zimrah: Ashrei: From One Generation to The Next
“Generation to generation will praise Your work, and Your mighty deeds they will recount”. Some events start in one generation and end in the next. Those of that second generation are able to recognize God’s greatness (after seeing the completion of those events). Yet, the first generation is praising God not just for what it has witnessed, but for what the preceding generation has told them. The ‘will praise’ is in the singular, while ‘they will recount’ is in the plural form; both generations unite in recounting God’s deeds (Yalkut Meam Loez, Psalma 145:4).
Often, we are limited in what we see unfolding; we have missed the beginning, or are still waiting for the ending.
We get glimpses of past times, pages torn out of history books, stories told by aging grandparents, fading memories.
We try to grasp clues to foresee what will become, analyze statistics in the hope of making sense of what lies ahead, take wild guesses regarding the future.
Yet each generation, with its unfinished storyline, praises God- in its unique way and with its specific set of circumstances. This snapshot we are living in right now is enough to incite us to give praise, knowing that it is part of a larger picture.
And then, we feel empowered by this long chain, and join in with all the previous generations to recount the wonders God did and is doing for us, generation after generation.