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Can you play with me?

Thursday, 22 August, 2019 - 9:50 am

It was 6:30 in the morning. Too early for a board game. Not for one of my beautiful children who asked if I can play a game with them. 

What to answer?
No, I have important things to do?
Yes, I want to play with you, however, first I need to pray?
Sure! (while thinking of the other things I need/want to accomplish)

Tough parenting decisions. Regardless of the answer, this moment is giving the child a message. Either I have important things to do, and playing with you is not one of them. Or, prayer needs to come first in the morning (this doesn't work if you aren't consistent in praying first daily). Or the message may be: I love you and I will prioritize playing with you (but be careful not to give negative energy off that you would prefer to be working).

This enigma applies not only to physical children but to spiritual children, students, and mentees as well.

What message are you giving them?
The Torah tells us, "And you shall teach them to your children, to speak with them".

Teach your children to speak using words of Torah (see the 12 passages here harfordchabad.org/323498).

Teach them to talk in a way that represents Torah. Speak respectful to their sibling and others, say please, thank you...

Teach them that you are thoughtful of the message you are conveying when answering their questions.

What message are we giving our children? When we speak? How we act? When we prioritize or don't prioritize our spiritual/religious life?

These are some of my recent musings on the Parsha! Do you agree? Disagree?

Have a great Shabbos!

 Rabbi Kushi Schusterman 

Comments on: Can you play with me?
8/22/2019

Carl A Brotman wrote...

I can see that how you act ,what you say , prioritizing etc , oh and also the mood and tone of the voice , can leave a positive imprint on child . Not only how they get you, but for them taking it on , and how they will treat others .