When the B’nei Yisrael approached Eretz Yisrael after leaving Mitzrayim and traveling in the Midbar, they fought their first battle against Sichon, the king of the Emori. When did this battle take place? The Midrash Rabba in Parshas Chukas says that it happened during the month of Elul.
During the month of Elul, we all have our own personal battle to fight as well – to subdue our yetzer hara with teshuva, tefilla, and tzedaka and to daven to Hashem to request his help for the upcoming Yamim Noraim.
We do not have to start from scratch, however. The groundwork has already been laid.
The B’nei Yissaschar says at the beginning of Parshas Va’eschanan: Moshe Rabbeinu says that he davened to Hashem, “בעת ההיא – at that time, לאמר – saying.” What was “בעת ההיא – that time,” and what is the significance of the word “לאמר – saying?”
בעת ההיא – that time – was the month of Elul, after the battle with Sichon. Wherever the word לאמר – saying – is used, it connotes that the conversation did not stop there, but rather, there is some type of response or continuation. There is a continuation to the תפילה of Moshe Rabbeinu. The month of Elul has now become a special period for תפילות for all time. We have “Hashem’s Ear”. All we have to do is ask.
If you are planning on visiting Eretz Yisrael, make the most of your visit in the Eretz HaKodesh, and spend a night or several nights learning with a kollel member in one of Kollel Aish Tamid’s six branches. Please contact Rabbi Calev Unger for details: firstname.lastname@example.org