I often start my mornings at Temple Emanu-El with a trip down to the preschool or with a warm welcome to the little ones and their parents as they open our front doors with joy. These tiny tots are full of excitement and enthusiasm, having just had the chance to finally be tall enough to reach up and touch that magical blue button that rings the bell and opens the door to our sacred space.
There is an innocent and everlasting love that comes from our tiny explorers. This very morning I had the chance to chat with one of our newest talkers as he tried to tell me about his new little sister. He sent me off to begin my day with a hug and a kiss as he and his dad began their journey down to the MJCCA Schiff School.
It’s this kind of everlasting love that our Torah portion speaks about this week. We’re called upon to love God with all of our heart, soul, and might. Further, we are commanded to share this love of God with children throughout our entire day: when we lie down and when we rise in the morning.
The love that we may have for children and the love that they return to us is divine. In this world, I think the love we receive from a child may be one of the closest ways we can get to experience the love that God has for us.
As we move into Shabbat this week, we have an extra opportunity to experience and share our love. At sundown tonight we enter the holiday of Tu B’av, literally the fifteenth of the month of Av, a day when we celebrate the love that we have in our life.
May we find moments in these next days to reach out to those we love and share with them our appreciation of their role in our lives. May we find moments to surround ourselves with the laughter of children and the holiness that they bring to the world. May we find moments to reflect, breathe, and find the love that we have for ourselves.