12 Kislev 5781 / Saturday, November 28, 2020 | Torah Reading: Vayeitzei
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Praiseworthy Parents

The national security of the Jewish People depends on our ability to teach our children from generation to generation. The main thing we teach is emuna and upright character…


The national security of the Jewish People depends on our ability to teach our children from generation to generation. The main thing we teach, through every facet of life, is emuna and upright character. Praiseworthy parents are those who succeed in their teaching, for their success is due to their personal example and their love-filled efforts. Without personal example and love, forget about teaching…


Hashem reveals his special affinity for our forefather Abraham when He says, "For he shall teach his sons and his household." (Genesis, Chapter 18) There were prodigiously righteous men before Abraham, but they didn't invest in their children's upbringing like Abraham did. These children therefore failed to walk the same path of righteousness that their parents walked. Abraham, though, succeeded in passing on his ideals of faith, piety, honesty and upright conduct to subsequent generations.


A person's praise is not so much his own level of accomplishment as his ability to raise accomplished children. Especially in the area of spirituality, a father or mother who raises children that have strong faith is much more praiseworthy than a saintly father or mother on a lofty spiritual level who fails to pass this on to his or her offspring.


A woman who neglects her children in favor of her own career is looking for trouble. In the end, she'll have little if any gratification from her children or from her career. Our children are our only true measure of success – that's the secret of the Jewish People's existence.


An extremely successful and wealthy businesswoman who runs a massive international firm told me that she doesn't leave for the office until she has personally prepared a warm meal for her children. If that's not enough, she takes a mid-day break to come home and eat with them. If this woman can find time for her children, then any woman can.


There are many "righteous" women who are so busy doing charitable acts for others that they neglect their own children. Such "charity" is that of the evil inclination. Does Hashem want her helping others while her own children have no mother at home? Definitely not!


A man told me that his wife came under the influence of a "miracle-working rebbetzin" who has midnight prayer meetings for women that are supposed to mitigate stern judgments against the Jewish People. He bitterly complained that his wife was prancing around until 2 AM and that his household was falling apart. Until that point, he had held his tongue. But, when he heard a lecture by Rabbi Eliyahu Gudlevsky, in which he said that anything a woman does which is detrimental to her household is hateful to Hashem, he decided to complain to me about his wife and seek my advice. I was so sorry to hear about a woman forsaking her household in the name of purported "Divine service."


What can we say about the social media sites and the text messaging that are guzzling women's time? And what can we say about the slovenly mothers who are neglecting their households and their children in favor of Facebook?


I knew of a woman who spent hours of charitably listening to other people's problems, but had no patience for her children. Needless to say, the types of temptations, even those that look like charitable deeds, which rob parents of time with their children do not stem from the side of holiness; just the opposite!


Even if a woman is a dedicated homemaker, compulsive cleaning and cooking that leaves no time for children is not the right thing to be doing. Children must be our first priority. May Hashem grant you much joy from your children, and if you don't yet have children, may you be blessed to become a parent soon, amen!

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