Mendy Kaminker

Elul is construction season

I don’t like construction.

It’s noisy, messy, and disrupts everyone’s life (except the construction workers, of course).

So when construction trucks pulled up in front of my street, I was like, “Ugh,” I wish they never did.

Walking outside, I looked at their work. They are peeling a layer of tar! For the next few days, driving will be bumpy and uncomfortable!

Okay, I know I am being both silly and shortsighted. Because my street badly needed a fresh coat to make the ride smoother. So I would deal with the inconvenience for a few days so we can be on a better road.

We are just about to enter the “Jewish construction season.” This coming week will usher in the Hebrew month of Elul. This month is known as “Chodesh Hacheshbon,” a month of self-reflection to help us prepare for the upcoming High Holidays.

Looking inward and examining our past actions might make us feel uncomfortable. Just like the heavy trucks peeling a layer of old, broken tar, we might uncover areas in our personalities that don’t feel great, things we regret doing, and perhaps overall, we didn’t meet our true potential.

But these feelings are temporary. Because the purpose is to prepare to lay down a new, fresh layer that would give us a smoother year ahead.

May this month of preparation for the High Holidays be successful and constructive!

About the Author
Rabbi Mendy Kaminker is the Chabad Rabbi of Hackensack, and an editorial member of
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