Shema: The Three Weeks: Mitzvah Planters
Posted in honor of M.S. a true Mitzvah Planter: “God does mighty deeds. He does things entirely new, plants the seeds of Tzedakot, good and just acts, thereby causing Yeshu’ot, awesome life-saving acts to flourish, creates new cures, works wonders, makes Creation happen every day (Blessings of Morning Shema).”
“God, the Lord, planted a garden in Eden (Genesis 2:8).” “When you arrive in the Land, plant all kinds of fruit trees (Vayikra 19:23).”
Rabbi Yehudah son of Rabbi Simon opened his lesson: Just as, at the beginning of Creation, God took time to plant, as the verse says, “God, the Lord, planted a garden in Eden,” so, too, with you; When you enter the Land of Israel, you should start right away by planting (Vayikra Rabbah 25:3).
What does God plant now? He “plants the seeds of Tzedakot, good and just acts,” and as the prayer continues later, “God raises those who feel low; frees those who are captive; redeems the humbled; does what is necessary to remove the misery of poverty from the lives of the poor, and responds to His people at the time they cry out to Him.”
Each act of Tzedakah is planted and causes Yeshu’ot, awesome life-saving acts to flourish, leads to new cures, wonders and joy.
The Three Weeks is the time of the year when we are most focused on the need for Yeshu’ot, and therefore is the time we can bring these words of prayer to life by becoming Tzedaka Planters. This is, teaches Rabbi Yehudah in the Midrash above, how we can build Israel, and regain the Garden of Eden!