Mah Tovu – OMG!  Story Song about Balaak, Balaam, and a Talking Donkey

Mah Tovu – OMG! Story Song about Balaak, Balaam, and a Talking Donkey

I sang along to ‘Mah Tovu‘ literally thousands of times before truly learning this story and finding it fascinating.

It is a perfect place to peak interest of prayer service participants of all ages.

I also wrote this song because I hope that it can help re-frame the way that our community members consider the use of the phrase “OMG” or “Oh My God”!

I hope that community members can consider the meaning and power of these words.

This song can be used in conjunction of study with Parshat Balak.

Or, of course, sing it any morning that you gather to a prayer service or community gathering of a musical or educational nature.

 

Scroll down for lyrics, OMG! – Mah Tovu Lead Sheet here.

This song tells a biblical story with a beginning, middle and end.

Help the students tell the story by asking the students to illustrate the lyrics of the song and then binding their illustrations to tell the story. Use the ‘book’ of bound illustrations as it is shared and/or digitize their artwork to share it with your community. Students (and families) will enjoy seeing their own handiwork on display- and the task of scanning the images and editing it into a video format can be a great assignment for a student that might not enjoy text study or musical performance in some of the other ways that it is typically offered in a synagogue setting.

Pro-tip: print the lyrics out on sheets of paper to be distributed to students- but number them on the back so that they are easier to re-order when it is time to assemble their collection into a cohesive presentation of the story and song.

Lyrics:
Oh My G*D
Your work is great
These tents, of Jacob’s
They are first rate
Oh My G*D,
Awesome is your space
Please bless me when I’m in this place

A mean King named Balak sent Balaam, his magician friend
To say mean things to Jewish people, he wanted us to end
With a Donkey as a helper, he didn’t do what the King said
When Balaam opened up his mouth, he made a blessing instead

Oh My G*D
Your work is great
These tents, of Jacob’s
They are first rate
Oh My G*D
Awesome is your space
Please bless me when I’m in this place

With G*D’s help the Jewish people have stayed alive and strong
We love G*D and G*D’s work, we praise G*D in this song
We remember this story, when we gather to pray

We sing a prayer in Hebrew, this is what we say
Ma tovu ohalekha Ya’akov, mishk’notekha Yisra’el.

Oh My G*D
Your work is great
These tents, of Jacob’s
They are first rate
Oh My G*D
Awesome is your space
Please bless me when I’m in this place

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.