Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Parshat Vayetzei- "Reach Your Potential"

        In this weeks parsha, it speaks about Yaakov's dream and in the dream he sees a ladder set up on earth, and the top of it reached to heaven; and behold the angels of G-d ascending and descending on it (28:12).  Why are angels going up and down the ladder? We learn that a ladder is the only object that when a person goes down the person will still look up. Hashem was trying to tell Yaakov that life won't be great anymore, no matter how life is you'll always look up. During our hard times in life we can always "lean" towards Hashem just like when a person is climbing the ladder and is stuck he leans on the ladder for protection. A person needs to have Simchat HaChayim- happiness of life, even though at times things may be rocky and hard we should never stop to think who is in control-Hashem! When things aren't going your way and you get upset then you haven't yet understood that Hashem is in control. It says in the Gemara, that if a person gets angry its as if he is serving Avoda Zara- idolatry. Why? The Gemara is teaching us that even if we didn't plan it to be this way and it looks terrible we should understand that it's coming from Hashem and He knows what He is doing, so we should accept it with happiness and not get angry. Anger comes from lack of Emunah- Faith. When a person is struggling or in pain one should turn to Hashem, look up to the heavens and pray. In order to overcome the anger one must find it within their heart that Hashem is in control and Hashem knows whats best for His children. So, when we are put in difficult challenges that we cannot understand remember Hashem loves you and wants the best for you so don't get angry at the situation rather try to understand why this is happening to you? Try to understand how you can better your service of G-d.
Another interesting reason why the angels were going up and down the ladder is when a person uses a ladder he uses his entire body whereas when a person uses the stairs he just uses his legs. When we are serving Hashem the proper way to serve Him is we need to be dedicated with a full heart and dedication. We need to work on serving Hashem with all the body parts that He gave us. Guarding our tongue, guarding our eyes and guarding our ears etc. We need to make sure that every mitzvah we do is for us to get closer to Hashem.

Actions arouse the heart, a person is influenced by his actions and his emotions and all his thoughts always follow the actions in which he is involved in. Meaning to say, that even actions which are carried out without intention nevertheless exert an influence over our hearts.

The best way to serve Hashem is with HAPPINESS -"Ivdu et Hashem B'Simcha".
We need to devote our entire body and neshama to the Holy One, Blessed His Name.

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