Photo Credit: Jewish Press

The month of Tammuz is upon us and a time to reflect on our actions is certainly appropriate.

World events are taking place daily whether it’s the left government that was just sworn in, in Israel or whether it’s the left government leading the American people, or any other country in the world, the worldly events keep racing on.

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Aside from political changes everywhere, here in Israel we have had natural disasters occur as well. Last week a huge part of a parking lot right in front of a Jerusalem Hospital fell into the ground, and in the past two weeks we have had two major forest fires which miraculously didn’t injure any people. What is happening around us? What is Hashem telling us, loud and clear? How can we as individuals make any change from where we stand?

The months of Tammuz and Av have been for centuries a time of pain and judgment, upon the Jewish people of Israel.

Many of the tragedies that befell the Jewish nation occurred during these months. From the time the Jewish people cried out to Moshe Rabbeinu in the desert after the meraglim – spies – came back from the land of Israel, complaining for nothing, we, the children from all generation thereafter, have been crying during these months every year.

The two Temples were destroyed during these months, horrible pogroms, persecutions, and the Holocaust started during these months. And the expulsion from Gush Katif all started during this time period.

Each year when this period comes around we tend to be extra careful with our daily activities and actions, since it is a tense time for the world.

So what can a person do in order to think and act more positively during these months?

Words can hurt and words can heal. With our words we can rule or destroy the world. Just a few words from a person can change the world. Major world leaders made change just by their speech.

Everything that happened and will happen have to do with words. Hashem created the world with ten verses, and with the ten commandments Hashem gave us the holy Torah. And with words man has built and destroyed so much in the world.

To fix our actions as a nation and as individuals is quite a task and not always successful. However, to change or exchange our words with positive ones, is achievable by everyone.

Each one of us has their own circle of influence, their family, friends, and the people they come into contact with daily, at their work place or even in their neighborhood grocery store.

I have a special needs child who returns home weekly for Shabbat. Each week he returns in his weekday clothing and when he arrives home I change and prepare him for Shabbat.

This past week I noticed that when he arrived home he was already changed and prepared for Shabbat. I was so pleased that I immediately phoned the home where my child attends all week and told them how pleased I was that they prepared him so nicely for Shabbat.

The female caretaker on the phone was so overjoyed. She explained to me that I made her day. She works so hard and no one ever notices the things she does. Her entire weekend now would be beautiful and happy just because I called to thank her.

I couldn’t believe how two words of mine made someone so happy. I went on to thank the man at the watermelon stand and the person I buy flowers from each Friday. And they all came to life from two words of mine and my big smile.

We can change the world, and we can change our words. If Hashem created the world and the Torah we live by with words, Hashem is telling us now what the secret of the redemption is all about. We pray with words, and we hate and love with words.

Let us use our words wisely, and bring upon us joy and happiness. With those actions, which we can all do, we will all be redeemed and salvation for the entire world will come during these months with our good actions. Amen.

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Michal can be reached at michal@jewishpress.com