Repairing the Breach
by Mrs. Chana Silver
As we go through the 3 weeks, the 9 days, and we get closer and closer to the day that will eventually be a Chag – we must think deeply about why it is just so long that we are in galus and how we must try to fix the current situation that we are in.
There are, of course, many many things that we could focus on and work on. I want to point out one very important idea – that can effect and impact all of our daily interactions with others and can very much help repair bein adam l’chaveiro situations.
The Imrei Emes [one of the great Gerrer Rebbes] describes the scenario of a person who is suspected of having tzara’as. If the Kohen is not sure – the person must be secluded away for a week to be checked again to see if it is in fact tzara’as or not. Let’s say that in the end it wasn’t tzara’as. So the Imrei Emes asks, what is going on? There is no happenstance or coincidence and this person went through a lot of inui – a lot of pain, being by themselves for the week, basically in solitary confinement. and in the end, it wasn’t tzara’as – so why did all of that happen?
His answer is astounding! He says that he had all of that affliction for words not spoken. Things that he should have said to someone ……..and didn’t. Words of encouragement and care, a compliment, a thank you, something that could help a person, give them some kavod, build them up in some way, or something that would be meaningful for them. These things went unsaid.
For this he was meant to sit for a week by himself and contemplate life and what could have happened and what he could have said.
We are talking about the concept of Lashon Tov. We always speak about the seriousness of lashon harah – but what about the flip side??
Words can indeed be soooo powerful!! Don’t underestimate how your spoken words can help a person! You must ask yourself how many times have you thought to say something nice to a person…. And just didn’t? Or – of course, they know how much I appreciate what they have done for me – I don’t have to actually thank them – right?
Speak up!! Lashon Tov is is the fiber of Ahavas Yisroel!! Don’t hold back on the words that you should be saying to another. Use the incredible gift of speech that Hashem has given us to make connections, praise others, give honor to others, and thank those who have helped you in any way.
Not only are you fulfilling the mitzvas asei of v’ahavta l’rai’acha kamocha – but you will be helping to repair the breach that we have within our communities and helping to bring the geula shelaima! May it be b’zman b’karov!