On some mornings when I wake up, I am not sure what mitzvot I will participate in during the day, but it never fails that opportunities occur and today was certainly lots of fun.
56& 57) Today, I spoke with two friends in job transition, in the past month or so I had given each a suggestion of someone I knew that I thought could be of help to them. Our follow up conversations today convinced them to just make the contact. Both women commented that I was doing a mitzvah in helping them.
For these next few mitzvot, I need to give a little background. Tomorrow night is the Jewish holiday of Purim. A holiday that most non Jews and even many Jews may not be familiar with. It’s one of the merriest of holidays, celebrating a time in Jewish history without persecution, it occurs in the springtime, announcing that spring is almost here. Purim is a wonderful time for families, everyone is encouraged to wear costumes, play-act and eat hamentaschen, a delicious cookie.
There are also specific customs around this holiday. One is to give money to the poor 58) (sent that in with my son this morning) and another one is called Shaloch Mones or giving gifts of food to friends. I have always enjoyed this mitzvah especially since my children were born. Each year they help as we decorate bags of food and my son always wants to eat the food even before we make the bags. I have often enjoyed giving the gifts to friends who may not celebrate this mitzvah.
59) Now onto the deliveries of the gifts. I had a doctors appointment today for a follow up on a situation that seems to have subsided, I debated whether I should actually keep the appointment. As late as last night I was going to call and cancel. (The doctor was a friend first and then became my doctor). In the end I kept the appointment. I brought her one of the Shaloch Mones (gifts). She was so grateful since she hadn’t had time to have lunch that day. She thought my keeping the appointment was the mitzvah, I thought giving her some food at just the right time was an even better one.
In the end we gave out 20 bags. Last night when we were bagging the gifts, I kept thinking maybe I should just donate the money it costs to make the bags to charity. However, after giving the gifts out today I think it’s a wonderful custom. The smiles and excitement they created was priceless.