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Parshas Korach

Wednesday, 13 June, 2018 - 10:30 am

 This Shabbos marks 25 years since the passing of the Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson, of righteous memory. We’ve posted lots of information here to help you learn more about the Rebbe’s devotion to G-d, discover how deeply he cared for each human being, and to glean insight into his teachings.

One of his lessons from this week’s Torah portion, Korach, is how the kohanim (priests) were to be given only the finest of all the offerings that were brought by the Jewish people. These contributions consisted of all kinds of commodities and were of the highest quality. Likewise, every Jew must dedicate the better part of himself to his Divine service.

Maimonides writes: “The law, as it pertains to everything that is for the sake of G-d, is that it must come from the finest and the best. For example, when one is feeding a hungry person, he should be served the tastiest and sweetest food on one’s table. When one clothes a poor man, he should be given the nicest garment. When one builds a house of prayer, the edifice should be more beautiful than one’s private abode, as it states, ‘All the best to the L-rd.’”

Of all the commodities a person possesses --- food, clothing and shelter --- the finest and best must be dedicated to matters of holiness. There is, however, another commodity to be dedicated to G-d, and that is time.

Time is extremely precious. It is therefore fitting that in addition to one’s material blessings, a person dedicates the very best portion of the day to G-d.

The morning, the beginning of one’s day, is the optimal time of the 24-hour period. In the morning, a person’s mind is at ease. He is not yet concerned or perturbed by problems that may plague him later. Thus the morning is the most appropriate time of day to dedicate oneself to holy matters.

One way to do this is to thank G-d immediately upon arising by declaring Modeh Ani, thanking Him for having restored our souls. Another way is to reserve the first few hours of the day for prayer and Torah study. The morning, the best time of all, is to be utilized for praying and learning Torah. Just as the contributions that were made to the priests were of the highest quality, so too must the very best of whatever we possess be reserved for our service of G-d.

The Rebbe would frequently insist that even the loftiest of thoughts must be translated into actual deed. So in connection with this yahrtzeit, let us join together in learning something additional, reciting an additional prayer, and giving some extra charity. We can apply some of the Rebbe’s care and selfless dedication to our own interaction with family, friends and total strangers. There can be no more fitting tribute to the Rebbe than millions of good deeds, mitzvot, performed on his day.

May G-d help us that in the merit of our collective acts of goodness we quickly greet our righteous Moshiach, at which time we will be reunited with our beloved Rebbe and all our loved ones. Have a good Shabbos.

 

Rabbi Shraga Sherman

Based on the writings of the Rebbe, lchaimweekly.org

 

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