Commentary on Parashat Ki Tavo, Deuteronomy 26:1 - 29:8
Many of us in this country have an overabundance of goodness in our lives. But sometimes in our society, with its saturation of goods and services, it is difficult to be aware of this abundance. If we have enough to eat, a place to sleep, and clothes to wear, we already have more than many people in the world. Becoming aware of how much we have, we naturally begin to think about what it means to give back to this world from which we’ve so plentifully received.
In this Torah portion we are required to take a tenth of our yield and give it to those who are needy: the stranger, the orphan and the widow. The Torah ensures that those who are needy are taken care of by their community.
Teaching children to give from what they have is also important. Can they give some of their toys and books and clothes to those needier than they are? Can they share what they have? Do you have a tzedakah (charity) box in your home and put aside something every week from allowance or income? It’s important to model giving from what we have to those who need it so that children can grow up having a sense of the importance of sharing what they have.
TALK TO YOUR CHILDREN about the importance of giving to others less fortunate.
CONNECT TO THEIR LIVES:
· Why do you think some people have more than others?
· What are some of the ways you can give to others who are needy?
· How do you feel when you give to others?
From “Values and Ethics: Torah Topics for Today,” available from Behrman House Publishers.
Pronunced: TORE-uh, Origin: Hebrew, the Five Books of Moses.