Thursday, October 18, 2012

338 - Va'eschanan

The very first time Hashem revealed Himself to Moshe, He commanded him to tell Bnei Yisroel that he was sent by Hashem to redeem them. "What should I tell them when they ask me for Your Name?" Moshe queried. To which Hashem responded, "I Shall Be As I Shall Be" (Shemos 3, 14).

Rav Wolbe (Ma'amarei Yemei Ratzon pg. 35) cites the Ramban's explanation of this enigmatic dialogue. Moshe was asking for the Name of Hashem that would unequivocally convey to Bnei Yisroel Hashem's existence and providence. Hashem responded that there is absolutely no reason that Bnei Yisroel should inquire as to His Name. The clearest proof of His existence is the fact that "I Shall Be" with them in all their times of suffering; they simply have to call out and I will answer them. There is no need for any other proof.

The reality that whenever Klal Yisroel daven's to Hashem He answers them, is the most obvious proof of the existence of our Creator. Rav Wolbe notes that this idea is found in this week's parsha. "Which great nation has a G-d Who is close to it, as Hashem our G-d whenever we call to Him?" (Devarim 4, 7). Though we might not be on the spiritual level to always have our personal tefillos answered, as did the righteous people of past and present generations, nevertheless, there is an aspect of this truth that we, too, can recognize. The Ibn Ezra explains the above pasuk, "For which great nation has a G-d Who is close to it, Who always answers them regarding any request for wisdom." In other words, Hashem answers any request for help in the spiritual arena (granted that it is reasonable).

It's not enough to simply want to succeed in growing spiritually. Moreover, it isn't enough to even sit down and learn. We have to ask Hashem for help in achieving our goals. It is tried and proven that these tefillos are always answered.

This week, throughout the world, Klal Yisroel celebrated the Siyum HaShas. To many who have never tried, learning Shas is a task that seems daunting. However, if we daven for Siyata D'shmaya, we will certainly be answered and be granted a substantial measure of Divine assistance to finish the next cycle of Shas which begins this week on Erev Shabbos!

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