“Seeing” Our Calling
First, we would like to share with you two short video clips, which we believe can serve as a true encouragement for everybody and anybody during these challenging times.
The first clip shows how a ‘MINYAN’ – (gathering of 10 people for prayer) is maintained in our neighborhood in Jerusalem, Israel.
The second one shows how people in Israel are trying to maintain the high spirit and also thank from their home balconies medical personnel in the country for their unbelievably devoted work during these impossibly tough times.
And we at Ulpan-Or are helping all of those who were cut off from their routine channels of learning, by providing online group Hebrew courses to people around the world and helping them to fight the isolation.
This week’s two Torah portions, Va’yakhel-P’kudy (which conclude the book of Exodus), deal with building the tabernacle “mishkan” – משכן
The head builder of the tabernacle was Betzalel.
The verse (35:30) introduces him in the following way:
וַיֹּאמֶר מֹשֶׁה אֶל-בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל, רְאוּ קָרָא ה’ בְּשֵׁם, בְּצַלְאֵל בֶּן-אוּרִי בֶן-חוּר, לְמַטֵּה יְהוּדָה
“And Moshe said to the Children of Yisrael:
See, G-d has called by name Betzalel the son of Uri the son of Chur from the tribe of Yehuda” (to conduct the construction of the tabernacle).
What is meant by G-d calling him by name?
The commentator Kli Yakar explains, that from the start, a person’s name, indicates the purpose for which he was created.
The name בְּצַלְאֵל Betzalel is comprised of two words:
1) Betzal –בצל meaning “in the shade of…“
2) *El – אל – a name of G-d.
In fact, all names with the ending …el insinuate Creator’s presence
Michael – מיכאל
Daniel – דניאל
Joel – יואל
So, one can deduce that the meaning of this combined name alludes to a humble person residing in the shade of the creator, and being guided by him.
Betzalel’s mission in life was to build the tabernacle and he was the principal architect of it guided by the Creator.
Now let’s examine the rest of the above verse:
“The son of Uri” means – the son of light.
The son who would build the housing in our physical world for the illuminating light of the Creator.
“The son of Chur.”
Chur, the son of Miriam, was killed when he tried to stop the making of the golden calf.
It was only proper that the tabernacle, serving as atonement for that sin, would be built by his descendant.
There is another unusual aspect of the verse:
What is meant by the first word “See – ראו”?
How were Children of Israel supposed to ‘see’ that Betzalel was called out to perform the construction?
Rabbi Feinstein explains that every person is blessed with certain abilities. These are given to him so that they could be utilized in his mission in life helping others and, in general, creating a better place in this world.
Betzalel was equipped with all of the necessary skills for constructing the tabernacle.
These were clearly G-d given abilities, as he certainly hadn’t learned them in Egypt!
Therefore, it was absolutely clear to all that he had been chosen by the Creator to fill these responsibilities – they ‘saw’ that he had been chosen.
Each and every one of us is blessed with our unique personalities, abilities, and outlooks.
These are given to enable us to accomplish the specific mission for which we were sent to this world.
And we have the free will to decide where we will focus our attention and energies, and as we do so in the right direction, or looking into our names, we will clearly ‘see’ our calling!
Wishing all of you a peaceful and healthy weekend.
Yoel & Orly
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