On Sunday night,
Rosh Hashana, the Jewish New Year, will be celebrated. While New Year’s
celebrations are nice (the Jewish calendar actually has four of them!),
Rosh Hashana’s significance is far greater than a mere New Year. It is,
in fact known as Yom Hadin, the Day of Judgment, and is a time when Jews focus on recognizing God as the King of Kings.

weeks leading up to Rosh Hashana are meant to be spent reflecting on
one’s actions and evaluating whether one has sincerely become a better
person. Unfortunately, our 24-hour media-fueled world not only teaches
us to focus on that which is going on around us, but also presents a
world of tragedies.

As we move into Rosh Hashana (and, in truth,
throughout the year), the way in which we perceive the often tragic
events in the world colors our ability to connect with and relate to God
as the King of the world.

Why do tornadoes devastate whole
towns? Why is there a drought? Why did any tragedy strike? The answer
is…we don’t know. As painful, difficult and unhappy as these
situations are, Jewish tradition teaches that God runs the world and
therefore there is a reason for everything.

Not knowing is a
great challenge for many people, especially in today’s “information
age.” In the Western World we are accustomed to being in control, which
makes it harder to accept the Bible’s declaration that “the secret
things belong to the Lord our God” (Deuteronomy 29:28).

makes this statement after describing the violent repercussions that
will happen to the Israelites if they cast off the yoke of Torah.
However, like every verse in the Torah, it has a deeper meaning as well.
The Torah is a guidebook for living, and it contains much wisdom to
help us to better understand the world. We must always remember, as the
conclusion of the previously cited verse states, that “the things that
are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do
all the words of this law.”

This Treat was reposted in honor of Rosh Hashana.

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