I am up before the rest of the family (except for my dear husband who is in the front yard doing something) am I am reflecting on the amazing awesomeness of Adonai! I came out to reflect in our sukkah and share about last evening’s celebration.
The Feasts and Festivals humble me. They are times when I realize how much I will never know this side of eternity–and yet how much I have learned. We discussed how deeply the Lord knows his creation and how he knows that it is by doing and repeating things in a kinesthetic way that we learn what we are supposed to be learning–and how many lessons are wrapped into the doing.
Our yard was filled with so many wonderful people last night as we stood in the Sukkah and waved the lulav–many for the first time in their lives! Those who had waved last year for the first time commented on how they got even more out of it this year because they weren’t thinking as hard about what direction they were to turn But we talked about coming to an understanding that these things are commanded for us–and what it means to come later in life, versus what we will be able to provide for our children.
Our congregation had a pre-Sukkot get away. Eventually we will camp for the actual week of Sukkot, but this year we made a step towards that and got out of the city to focus our hearts. Not everyone’s lives and schedules have gotten to the place of going away for a week. I understand! This year was the first time out intention to get away at all at this season had finally been realized!
We slept in a yurt and the first morning when we awoke I realized that directly above me, through the see-through top of the yurt, was the top of a brilliant pine tree. It was so huge above us, and with so many branches. One of my 7 year olds lay next to me on the blow up mattress as we watched the tree in the early morning hours. I pointed to it and explained that Adonai says his nation is a tree–and that we grow from our parents at the level of righteousness where they are. We talked about all of the things his dad and I are able to teach him, and how our hope and prayer is that so many of these things will be easier for him. I told him that Hashem’s design, and my desire, is that our children will all grow in greater righteousness than we are able!
And we adults discussed this last night. When one has not been raised celebrating the Feasts and Festivals . . . . when one comes to this later in life and learns that for our whole life before we were missing this very big “teachable moment” (spoken as the homeschooler mom I am ) . . . one of the things we grieve is that we did not learn as much as we could have over our lives. We are humbled to be like little children–and perhaps this is part of what Yeshua was speaking of when he said, “Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of G-d like a child shall not enter it.” Each year as we learn and do more we are receiving the Kingdom of G-d like a child!
And when we learn these things while our children are still young, we are allowing them the opportunity for even greater righteousness than we have access to! The Lord instructs us to do and say certain things, “When your children ask you why you do . . . . tell them . . . . ” And our children have the opportunity to ask us!
When everyone awakes today I will bring them out to start our homeschooling day in the sukkah. We will wave the lulav and we will talk about Sukkot. My children will have the opportunity to ask me. And I am reminded again that it doesn’t matter so much when I came to the awareness of the need to do this thing. It is not so important when we started. The important thing is that we came to understand, and we are doing, and when my children will ask me, I will be able to tell them.