web analytics
July 24, 2014 / 26 Tammuz, 5774
Israel at War: Operation Protective Edge
 
 
At a Glance
Judaism
Sponsored Post
IDC Advocacy Room IDC Fights War on Another Front

Student Union opens ‘hasbara’ room in effort to fill public diplomacy vacuum.



Home » Judaism » Parsha »

A Psalm For Shabbos

Niehaus-071913

Ah, Shabbos Nachamu! Finally the three weeks of mourning have finished, and the seven-week period of comforting, of nechama, has begun. We breathe a sigh of relief and life goes back to normal. But wait a minute – it doesn’t seem like anything has changed! We still do not have the Bais HaMikdash or the extreme closeness to Hashem which we so yearn for! So why do we switch over to a process of comforting? Furthermore, since this entire period is referred to as a time of comforting, why do we find an expression of that nechama specifically on Shabbos through the special haftaras, and not during the week?

Let us start with Chapter 92 of Tehillim:A psalm, a song for the day of Shabbos.” Although we might have expected this chapter to discuss the beauty of Shabbos and its different aspects, in truth there seems to be no apparent connection. So why is this the special mizmor of Shabbos? Harav Eliyahu Lopian zt”l explains the connection with a beautiful parable.

Making Sense Out Of Chaos

A couple once discovered a beautiful estate with stunning gardens, containing the most exquisite flowers and trees. Immaculate brick paths led them past creeks and towering fountains of waters. “If this is what the grounds look like, the house itself must be an amazing edifice,” said the husband. Suddenly, in front of their eyes stood a massive mansion in the most decrepit state! There were gaping holes in the roof, and the walls seemed to be falling down! “The owners must have abandoned their home,” commented the wife. “But if so, why are they keeping the rest of the estate in such good shape?” asked the husband. After looking again carefully they realized that the owners were just remodeling in order to make it even more beautiful!

When we look around us, it seems that evil people can do what they want, and many times they are even given control over us. Tragedies befall the best of people, and their suffering pains our hearts. We may mistakenly think that Hashem has chas v’sholom left the world to run on its own. But on the other hand, with just a little contemplation we can see that Hashem’s greatness, wisdom and kindness fill every inch of the universe.

Let’s take our feet, for example. Imagine trying to design and manufacture a device that would transport you on all sorts of terrains – flat and hilly, rocky, sandy or icy. It must also help you climb over walls and up trees and walk on narrow ropes. Don’t forget that it must also allow you to leap, jump and swim. And when you sit, it needs to be tucked out of the way. These are just a few of the many amazing features of our legs that Hashem has provided us free of charge!

Everywhere we look, we see Hashem’s great kindness and involvement in our lives, ensuring smooth operation. Most of us always have food in the house, and we never go to sleep on an empty stomach. Our digestive and respiratory systems run smoothly, and we are generally healthy. “Gadlo,” the signs of His greatness, “vetuvo,” His kindness, “malei olom,” fill the world! (Shachris of Shabbos)

Once it becomes clear to us that the all merciful Great Conductor is orchestrating everything that happens in this world, we will realize that even seemingly bad things are for our best interest. And if we don’t understand now, we will understand in the World to Come.

We can gain this awareness all week long, but on Shabbos it becomes crystal clear. On a simple level, this is because on Shabbos we stop all our activities and have time to truly see and feel that Hashem is the epitome of good. But it is deeper than that. On this day the universe was completed, and the purpose of creation becomes clear. This world is not our final destination – it is the place to earn the eternal reward of the World to Come by fulfilling the Torah. Thus we realize that everything that is happening is because Hashem in his infinite kindness wants to help us partake in the greatest happiness possible – Olam Habba!

About the Author: Rabbi Eliezer M. Niehaus, raised and educated in Los Angeles and subsequently Yeshivas Toras Moshe in Yerushalayim, is the Rosh Kollel of the Zichron Aron Yaakov Kollel in Kiryat Sefer , Israel. He lectures for the public and is the director of the Chasdei Rivka Free Loan Gemach. He can be reached at kollel.zay@gmail.com.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “A Psalm For Shabbos”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Shimon Peres meets with the family of fallen IDF soldier Max Steinberg.
Four Notes on The Situation
Latest Judaism Stories
Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis

We are all entrusted with the mission of protecting our fellow Jews

The Yabok River

Today, we remain Hashem’s nachal.

Lenny1

Will Your brothers go to war, while you sit (in peace) here? (Bamidbar 32:6)

PTI-071814

Perhaps, just perhaps, we can relate to this: whenever we feel distant from Hashem, that is the Churban.

Over the next 2 weeks covering portion Matot and Maasei, Rabbi Fohrman will bring order to confusion.

Our home is in the center of the Holy Land, surrounded by (what else?) green hills and valleys.

“Sound fine,” said Mrs. Schwartz. “In the middle, paint their names, Shoshana and Yehonasan. He spells his name Yehonasan with a hei and is very particular about it!”

Question: I recently returned from a trip abroad and wanted to say HaGomel. When I mentioned this to the officers of my synagogue, however, they told me – as per the instructions of the synagogue’s rabbi – that I would have to wait until Shabbos to do so. I was not given any reason for this and did not wish to display my ignorance, so I quietly acquiesced. Can you please explain why I had to wait?

Name Withheld
(Via E-Mail)

We may not recognize the adverse affect of eating forbidden foods, but they leave an indelible imprint.

There are several rules that one must adhere to when making a neder.

Important message for Jews in the Diaspora: In times of need run to Israel rather than from Israel.

The negotiation between Moses and the tribes of Reuven and Gad is a model of conflict resolution.

Once again we find ourselves alone – a little lamb among wolves.

When we return to our routines, things don’t have to go back to exactly the way they were.

More Articles from Rabbi Eliezer M. Niehaus
Niehaus-070414-Sitting

Is the fact that we can spend time with our families just a fringe benefit of Shabbos or an integral aspect?

Neihaus-060614

Now that she has entered her husband’s domain, they become extremely close.

The more we are aware of Hashem’s involvement in our lives, the more we will act accordingly.

When Hashem took us out of Mitzrayim, we received not only a physical freedom but also a spiritual one.

Such a misunderstanding would render our words worthless, for we would not be declaring that Hashem is truly the Master of the Universe.

Friday night corresponds to Shabbos Bereishis – therefore we discuss the creation. Shabbos morning corresponds to the Shabbos when we received the Torah, so in Shachris we mention that. And finally, Shabbos afternoon corresponds to the Shabbos of the World to Come, so in Mincha we talk about the Oneness of Hashem, which will be clearly revealed at that time.

First let us explain what shira is. Rav Shimshon Pinkus zt”l writes (She’arim B’Tefila, page 65) that shira is when we relate praises in a detailed manner, as opposed to zimra, where we praise in a more general way.

On the ninth of Teves Ezra HaSofer was niftar. The Gemara (Megilah 15a) tells us that Ezra was actually Malachi – the last prophet. With his passing, the glorious era of nevuah, prophecy, came to an end.

    Latest Poll

    Do you think the FAA ban on US flights to Israel is political?






    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/judaism/parsha/a-psalm-for-shabbos/2013/07/18/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: