While we have been having a relatively warm winter in the United States, it cannot compare to what winter is like in Israel. It is the rainy season there, the time of year that Israel greens up, with cooler temperatures and rain (which feels like a miracle every time I experience it) in between
The sukkah is a symbol of fragility. We build the temporary structure each year and know that it is only meant to last for the week-long holiday. It sways in the breeze. The raindrops land inside. The animals nibble at our decor. We know it could come crashing down on us.
Spread over us the sukkah of Your peace. Blessed are You O Lord, who spreads out a sukkah of peace over us, over the entire people Israel, and over Jerusalem.
In a few weeks we will be celebrating Tu BiSh’vat. There are numerous approaches you could take in planning your celebration.
A young man came to a rabbi for a chat.
“I’ve bought a new car” said the young man to the rabbi.
“Congratulations,” he replied.
I love Tu BiShvat’s low-key preparation: no sermons, no sukkah, and no kitchen turned upside down. Quick trips for food and wine, and I’m all set.