Beautiful Clothes, Beautiful Actions
Tetzaveh (Exodus 27:20-30:10 )
The Torah lists in detail the beautiful garments that the Kohanim, the Priests, had to wear when serving in the Tabernacle. As the Priest had a unique and important position amongst the Jewish nation, it was imperative that he dressed in a way that impressed upon him the importance of his position and mission.
A person's clothing can have an effect on the way the person feels. A pyjama day can leave a person feeling relaxed, perhaps even lethargic, whereas a person in black tie attire will carry themselves very differently.
This concept of exterior affecting our interior is not limited to clothes.
The Sefer Hachinuch explains that a person’s attitude is influenced by his actions.
A story is told of a man who asked the Chafetz Chaim for some advice regarding working in a bank. The Chafetz Chaim advised that if he is to work there he should work in the department that gives out the money, rather than the department that takes it in. Someone who repeatedly ‘takes’ will be affected by the act of taking, but on the contrary a person spending all day giving can become more of a ‘giver’.
This is the extent that our actions can affect who we are on the inside.
Understanding this leads us to a life changing revelation. To change who we are on the inside we should change what we do on the outside!
The way to become a ‘giver’ is to desire to change, and then to give!
Like the Priest would dress in the beautiful unique garments to impress upon him the importance of his mission, so too we should dress ourselves in good deeds, letting our positive external actions change us for the better.