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  • Torah Reading: Naso
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Sivan 15

Fortunate is the person who has the God of Jacob as his help; his hope is in his God (Psalms 146:5).

We may see ourselves as dependent for survival on those means that we employ to earn our livelihood. We often tend to forget that our true dependence is on God. Consequently, if anything should occur that appears to jeopardize our means of earning a living, we may panic. A firm trust in God would allow us to approach such situations with constructive rational thought rather than with panic, which is likely to be destructive.

Rabbi Schneur Zalman once lodged at an inn and asked the innkeeper where he could find a minyan (quorum of ten) for morning services. The innkeeper explained that he was the only Jew in this tiny hamlet. "Then how do you pray all year round without a minyan?" the rabbi asked.

"What can I do?" the innkeeper said. "This is my parnasah (livelihood)."

"Do you think that God has provided a parnasah for all the Jews in the city, but has none for you?" the rabbi asked. The following morning, Rabbi Schneur Zalman awoke to find that the innkeeper had packed all his belongings on wagons. Upon inquiring, he was told that the innkeeper was moving to the city. Rabbi Schneur Zalman would always relate this story as an example of the unwavering trust in God which simple folk were able to achieve.

A group of blind men asked a sighted person to lead them. Each put his hand on the shoulder of the one in front of him. They all knew that although they were being immediately led by the man in front of them, the ultimate leader of the entire procession, who made their safe progress possible, was the sighted person on whom all were ultimately dependent.

The things we work with and the people with whom we transact are but the means or the vehicles with which the Ultimate Provider tends to our needs.

Today I shall...

remember that my Ultimate Provider is God, Who has limitless ways to provide for my needs.

With stories and insights, Rabbi Twerski's new book Twerski on Machzor makes Rosh Hashanah prayers more meaningful. Click here to order...

May 21, 2009

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