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Parsha [Passage of Scripture] Nugget [Precious Idea] Ki Sisa – Exodus 30:11-34:35
G-d wants you to have faith in Him. Indeed since He is a loving Father you should be able to rely on His care. But after the debacle in the Garden of Eden, the Almighty decreed that humans would, “with the sweat of your face…eat bread.” So G-d requires that you take action to make a living. It’s confusing. When should you just sit back and trust in the Almighty’s generosity? And when must you take steps toward your goal? The secret is uncovered in Parshas Ki Sisa:
“And G-d spoke to Moses saying, see I have called by name Bezalel son of Uri son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah…” (Shemos/Exodus 31:1-2)
This week’s parsha gives the mitzvah of the half-shekel, deals with the last few items for the Altar, discusses the Sabbath, and relates the story of the Golden Calf.
What’s In a Name?
G-d appointed Bezalel to build the Mishkan, the Earthly abode in which He would rest His presence. He could have said, “I want Bezalel to build the Mishkan.” Instead the Almighty points out He called Bezalel “by name.” Why is the name important?
If you recall the story of creation, G-d paraded the animals by Adam, who gave each a name. He didn’t label them randomly. Each name designated the essence of the animal’s character.
Originally Adam was to fulfill human destiny. But when he ate the fruit from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil G-d changed His plan. No longer would the whole of humanity be bound in one soul. Ever since, when a child is born, the Almighty designates a piece of Adam’s soul for him or her. Certain skills and characteristics reside in that bit of Adam’s spiritual DNA. At the same time G-d gives the child a name. The two, soul and name, are inextricably bound.
When G-d appointed Bezalel “by name” to oversee construction of the Mishkan, He ensured the particular abilities and traits His appointee got from Adam would be put to use.
Act or Have Faith?
Bezalel is not unique. G-d gives each human being, including you, specific expertise and qualities as a legacy from Adam. He chooses them for you so you can accomplish the mission He designates for you.
However, the Almighty’s plan for the world cannot be understood by the human mind. So it’s impossible to know for sure what your mission is. You must have faith that the path you choose is the one G-d chose for you.
You must do your best to understand your strengths. Introspection and guidance from those who know you best will help. Having done your best to accurately determine the gifts the Almighty gave you, align your mission with them.
Then take action.
If you made an open, wholehearted self-investigation, your action will bear fruit. The more certainty you bring to your actions, the more likely your sincere faith and actions will be rewarded.
What does it mean if you don’t make progress after trying and trying and trying? Perhaps your self-assessment is off the mark. Try again. Life is an iterative process.
You know for sure that G-d has given you a mission and the ability to see it through. Have faith in him and yourself that you will find your mission. Take action to make it happen.
Do you have clarity about your life’s mission? Please comment below.
Every year beginning on Simchas Torah, the cycle of reading the Torah, the first five books of the Bible, ends and begins again. Each Sabbath a portion known as a sedra or parsha is read. It is named after the first significant word or two with which this weekly reading begins.
What verse in the Old Testament would you like to know more about? Ask here and I will answer it in a future Parsha Nugget!