Thursday, March 17, 2011

Mitzvah of Lulav/Esrog - by Chaya Simon (as told by Batya)

Think of days that you anticipate; the last time you had a trip scheduled to an amusement park, or the day of your birthday, or when you're leaving to camp. You wake up early, early in the morning, so you can get started on the fun and excitement that you've been awaiting.. . One of my favorite times of year was the competition to wake my father early Sukkos morning. After having spent long hours and many nights before Yom Tov selecting a beautiful Esrog set, Abba wanted to use it at the earliest possible time. So every year on the first night of Sukkos my father would remind us that he was offering a reward to the person who wakes him first, just after sunrise, so he can bentch Lulav and Esrog. On Yom Tov, like Shabbos, my father didn't have to be up at 5:00 in time to learn and participate in his 6: 15 Minyan. But on Sukkos morning a mitzvah was waiting; a mitzvah we only get a chance to do once a year, a mitzvah for which Aba had spent weeks preparing and anticipating, and he wanted to do it at the first possible moment. The anticipation to do the mitzvah was as tangible as a child waiting to open his birthday gifts.

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