By Chanie Gourarie
Parshat Behar, on the mountain, it does mean,
Hashem spoke to Moshe on Mount Sinai, so green,
When you enter the land, on the seventh year, you must let it rest,
For six years, to work your land, you should do your best.
Why isn’t the verse reversed,
If the six years of planting come first?
With Hashem we need to touch base,
And ask ourselves why we are working in the first place.
Do we live to eat or do we eat to live?
Do we work to make money or do we make money to give?
Do we give up on raising a family to have a career,
Or do we have a career to support our family so dear?
Before we go work to do our part,
We have to have our perspective straight from the start,
To devote the seventh year to Hashem, is our priority,
Hashem is the one who gives prosperity.
This applies to resting on Shabbat too,
Hashem sustains every Jew,
We won’t make an extra dime,
If on Shabbat, in the office we spend time.
There is a lot we can learn,
From a parable about an urn,
A unique urn had six spouts all around,
Filling up cups of coffee, six men were found.
The seventh man did complain,
Because there was no coffee by the time he came,
“If only there was a seventh spout,
There would be coffee for me, he did shout.”
The amount of coffee that the urn can contain,
The man didn’t realize, remains the same,
If you add an extra spout,
No extra coffee will come out.
We need to have faith and learn,
That Hashem decides how much money we will earn,
In six days or seven, we will earn the same amount,
To give Tzedakah and to put into our bank account.
For another lesson on perspectives we don’t have to look far,
It is clear in Parshat Bechukotai, which is often read with Behar,
In Parshat Bechukotai, it does say,
That we need to give ten percent of our earnings away.
A person could say, it’s not fair,
I don’t want to share,
From this story we will see,
That giving Tzedakah should be our priority.
A charity collector once asked a rich man for a donation,
He was turned away with an explanation,
The wealthy man said that he already gave his share,
He showed his charity receipts from the past year.
Looking around the room, the collector did see,
The wealthy man’s home full of beauty,
The collector asked if he could share,
A Torah thought for all to hear.
When the Beit Hamikdash stood in all its glory,
Tithing from one’s flock was mandatory,
How was this process done?
The animals walked out of the pen one by one.
The owner would count one, two, three,
With red dye the tenth would be marked immediately,
Why was this exercise necessary?
Why did each animal have to be counted individually?
The owner would realize, as the animals walked out the door,
That although he was giving, he was getting much more,
It was as though Hashem was saying, “After giving you nine,
I’m asking for just one to be mine.”
All of our wealth, from Hashem does come,
We need to share with everyone,
We need to change our perspective,
And give without being selective.