Simcha's Torah Stories - Matot/Masei

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Simcha's Torah Stories

Parshat Matot/Masei

LOST OPPORTUNITIES

Chaim, look at that crowd of people!

Wow, I wonder what is going on Avi? Let's get a closer look.

Everyone seems to be waiting to get into that little shul over there. I wonder what is inside.

Let's ask one of the people waiting in line. Excuse me sir, can you please tell me why this crowd of people has gathered?

Everyone is waiting to see someone, young man.

Whom are they waiting to see? He must be very important if so many people are waiting so long to see him.

He is very important, young man. He is one of the Gedolim. One of the world's foremost Rabbis is visiting here from Jerusalem. We are all waiting in line to see him. Some want to ask him questions about halachot (Torah laws). Others want to ask him for advice in difficult life matters. Others want to receive a blessing from him. It is said that his blessings actually come true.

Wow. What a great person is in our midst. This is a real opportunity. What do you say Chaim? Should we wait here in line to see the great Rabbi?

Hmmm. It looks like a long line Avi. We could be here over an hour. I'm hungry. I was going to go home and eat lunch, then play outside for a while. Excuse me sir, if I left and came back, do you think that I would be able to see the Rabbi?

I would not count on it young man. There are many people waiting. The Rabbi is not a young man. There is a limit to the number of people that he can see. He may close his doors by then.

What you are saying, sir is that I have an opportunity to see one of the Gedolim now. If I leave, I may lose that opportunity forever.

That is correct, young man.

The same thing happened in this week's parsha.

Young man; you must be a very big expert on Chumash. I do not recall anything like this in the parsha.

Look in the verses about the korbonos (sacrifices) brought in the times of the Beis HaMikdash (Holy Temple). There was a special korbon brought every Shabbos called the Olas Shabbos. This korbon consisted of two lambs, along with their meal, oil, and wine offerings. The Torah calls this the "Shabbos offering in its Shabbos." Why does the Torah need to tell us that the offering is brought in its Shabbos?

Good question, young man.

Rashi has a good answer. The offering can only be brought on that particular Shabbos. If for some reason the Olas Shabbos was not brought one Shabbos, the Kohen could not offer up a double offering the following Shabbos. When the time passed, the opportunity was lost. Now we have an opportunity to meet with this great man. When he leaves, the opportunity will be lost.

I guess you have decided to wait in line.

Right you are sir. While we are waiting, can I share another thought with you?

Why certainly, young man. You are a very insightful person.

Thank you. I was thinking that many of the mitzvos are bound to a particular time. If they are not performed in their time, the opportunity is lost.

Young man, Shlomo HaMelech wrote something like that in Koheles. "Everything has its season and there is a time for everything under the heavens." In our daily lives, we have our schedules of learning, tefillah (prayers), meals, resting, cleaning, etc. The best way to do these things is in the proper time set aside for them.

Look, as we are talking, we have reached the head of the line. I am so excited to see this great Rabbi. I am going to ask him for a blessing that I will be able to take advantage of all of life's opportunities.

Young man, may the blessing come true.

Amen.


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