My favorite mitzvah of the year comes immediately after Yom Kippur. As the last shofar blast pierces the night, we are supposed to run home and start building our sukkah. The first nail hammered into the ground to symbolize an urgency to begin our year with action.
Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur are brimming with words. For hours we pray, confess, promise, plead, hope and dream. We forgive, mourn, regret, rage, challenge and encourage. And for the most part, we remain rooted in place, teaching our heart a curriculum of compassion and change for the upcoming year. But moments after Yom Kippur ends, the biggest choice resides in our hands. Talk the talk or walk the walk?
Walking the walk is leaving Yom Kippur services with a bit more patience as the traffic in the parking lot begins to build up. Walking the walk is seeing the person with whom we disagree and offering a humbling hello. Walking the walk is determining whether our words lift or crush another’s soul. Walking the walk is living as an active partner in God’s ongoing creation of the world.
We will spend ten beautiful, sacred days praying, singing, talking. May we spend the remainder of this year loving, building, giving, walking.
So lace up those shoes and get ready.
In partnership with The Jewish Journal, you can also find Rabbi Guzik’s blog post HERE.