It is interesting that the word AV is made up of two letters: Aleph and Bais. Aleph stands for Elul and Bais stands for Ba which means-Elul Ba, Elul is coming.
We shouldn't wait until Rosh Chodesh Elul to start to make changes and get closer to Hashem.
Already the month beforehand we have a reminder - from the name of the month Av itself -to get into the mode and start thinking about where we are and where we want to be.
Each and every one of us has so much potential for good. We have to look deep inside our hearts to see it, to feel it, to acknowledge it and then to act upon it.
The month of Av starts off as a sad month. We mourn the loss of the bais hamikdosh and daven for it to be rebuilt. But then along comes Shabbos Nachamu-where Hashem comforts us by saying that the day will come when we will once again be brought back to that holy state of closeness to Him and clarity and we will all live in happiness together. For seven shabbasos after Tisha B'av, the shiva d'nichemta are read - seven haftoros relating words of encouragement and comfort to Klal Yisroel.
Now that we are getting closer to the end of Av, let us remind ourselves that Elul Ba-Elul is coming!
What is the avoda at this time?
This shabbos, we read something at the table (from Leket Reshimos on Elul) that we had read last year. I had posted and expounded on it then and want to share it with you once more.
It was called Focusing on Doing Good During Elul.
We are not on the level of previous generations who the very mention of the word Elul made the fish in the sea tremble and the people start shaking and...fainting.
We are not meant to be on that level.
We have to serve Hashem on the level that we are on.
We need to let the thought of Elul bring us to better places, places of change and growth-but at our own pace, with small, even tiny baby steps in our avodas hashem.
Recently, someone told me (um, texted me) that she was having a hard time. She was falling down and trying to figure out how to get back up. When I tried encouraging her that she's amazing for trying even though it's not easy to climb back up again, she said she feels like a loser. So I told her, you are not a loser until you give up. As long as you are trying you are a winner!
Let those words enter each one of our hearts...especially in Elul when we all need to hear it.
You are not a loser until you give up. As long as you are trying you are a winner!