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Parshas Vayakhel-Pekudei – It All Depends On Us



It is written in this week’s parsha, “Every man whose heart inspired him came….for the work of the Tent of Meeting” (Exodus 35:21). The building of the Mishkan–Tabernacle, required great craftsmanship. Every aspect of it was delicate and intricate, and required utmost precision. Our ancestors, who were charged with this awesome task, were a nation of slaves, who for many generations were subjugated and oppressed by their Egyptian masters. They lacked the skills to perform this delicate work, and yet, they succeeded in constructing G-d’s Tabernacle without any difficulty. What was their secret? How did they achieve this insuperable task for which they were so ill-equipped? The answer lies in this passage: “Every man whose heart inspired him came ….for the work of the Tent of Meeting.”

From this we learn that if you truly yearn to do G-d’s Will, then there will be no obstacle in your path. Your heart will elevate you and allow you to soar and achieve that which only yesterday seemed beyond your capability. Thus the Midrash teaches us “Ein dover omed lifnei haratzon”–“Nothing stands before the will of a person.” When you truly wish to fulfill G-d’s Will, nothing can impede you.

We find this concept reinforced throughout the Torah. Batya, the daughter of Pharaoh saw the basket carrying the infant Moshe floating on the Nile. She wanted to save the child and stretched her arm–but she couldn’t possible reach the basket. Her desire was so intense, however, that G-d actually extended her arm and she succeeded in bringing the infant to shore.

Similarly, we should never feel intimidated by our mitzvot. If we truly desire to fulfill them, we need only stretch out our arms and give our hearts, and HaShem will do the rest. If we so desire, He will help us convert our homes into sanctuaries in which the Word of G-d and the light of the Sabbath and holidays will prevail.

Shabbos HaChodesh means renewal. This is the time for all of us to renew ourselves spiritually, and G-d promises to guide us on this journey.

Shabbos Chazak: On this Shabbos we conclude the Book of Exodus, and as we do so, the entire congregation rises and proclaims “Chazak, Chazak, V’Nischazek”–Be strong! Be strong! And may we be strengthened.” We beseech HaShem to give us the strength to continue and succeed in our Torah studies and strengthen our commitment.

Shabbos HaChodesh: On this Shabbos we take out a second Torah Scroll and read the section of the Torah that discusses the laws of the Passover sacrifice and the eating of matzoh and marror.

By: Rabbi Osher Jungreis

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