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Moses appointed twelve emissaries to scout out the Holy Land and return with a report. The representative for the tribe of Ephraim was Moses’ primary disciple, Joshua. Until this time, the lad’s name was Oshua. But Moses added a letter to his name and called him Joshua.
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Home » High Holidays

New Year Greeting 5772: New Resolutions

Submitted by on October 5, 2011 – 4:58 pmNo Comment | 3,060 views

The High Holiday liturgy often makes use of our Biblically prescribed designation as G-d’s children. We remind G-d of the natural love that fathers have for children and beg Him to see us in that light even if our behavior doesn’t reflect the love we have for Him.

In light of our preoccupation with children during this holy time I want to devote several lines to the importance of children. Having and raising children is life’s our most important endeavor. If at the end of life you were asked about your proudest accomplishment, would you respond with the size of your business, the opulence of your home or the children you raised?

As we step back and reflect during this period of reflection we do well to ask ourselves if the time we devote to our children is consistent with the importance we attach to them. Do we spend more time with our children than with any other task in life? When we have extra time, do we spend it with the children or on the golf course? Do our children know that no matter how busy we are we will always set aside time when they call? Do our children know that no matter what they do we will always love them? Do our children know that no matter what trouble they face we will always support them? Most importantly, do our children know that no matter what it costs us we will always be there for them? Do they know that their interests always come first? That for example, being at a game or performance that is important to them is a higher priority to us than meeting a client?

The other side of this coin is how much do we know about them? Do we make it our business to know their friends? Do we offer guidance when we feel their friends mislead them? Do we chat with their teachers and have a strong idea of what goes on in their classroom? Do we know their hopes and plans for life? Do we know their fears and concerns? Do we know if someone has hurt or abused them? Do we know if they are involved in an addiction or obsession? Do we know how they spend their free time?

Here I don’t mean to ask if we are successful sleuths in our children’s lives. I am much more interested in asking whether our relationship with our children is such that they willingly, trustingly and lovingly share this information with us.

Conversely, do our children receive structure and guidelines from us? Do we offer discipline as well as love? Have we learned the delicate art of parenthood or have we become their friends? Because our children receive plenty of friendship from their friends, from us they need a parent.

Let us remember that what we do for our children will affect the rest of their lives. There is nothing that impacts us more than the treatment we receive from our parents in childhood. If we feared our parents in our youth we continue to fear them in adulthood. If we trusted and loved them as children we trust and love them as adults. The degree to which our parents trust us directly determines the extent of our self confidence and esteem.

We all know how much we were affected by our parents. Let us not forget how much we mean to our children.

In the coming year of 5752 let us resolve to be better parents. If your children are older, remember that it is never too late. If G-d has yet to grant you this precious blessing offer your love to another’s child – I don’t need to tell you how impactful such love, guidance, care and concern can be – to any child.