Parashat Va’etchanan

Shabbat – Fact of Life – Take This Seriously

We live in a World of Confusion!!  What is right? What is wrong?  What is called a priority? What is not called a priority? People find many answers and ways to justify everything they do but according to Torah views they could be totally wrong! We live in a day and age that people find time to do many activities in the physical world. When it comes to the spiritual world and getting closer to Hashem many people don’t find the time!!!.

We live in a city where the Jewish community has grown in population from where it was 20 years ago. We have more kosher restaurants, Shuls, & Jewish schools in our community too!

We find that people in our community have a tendency to go out to expensive restaurants more often, take more vacations, have fancier cars, & bigger houses. Seems people are able to deal with everything concerning this materialistic & physical world!!! The Million Dollar Question is why some members of our Community still have a hard time to come to the Shul to Daven in a Minyan, listen to shiurim, & lectures?

Why on Shabbat morning they are getting up so late?  Desperately looking for latest minyanim?  Missing the Zeman Shema and Tefillah on time? Why our Sehuda does take extra time to finish? Why do we take such long afternoon Shabbat naps? Why must we roam around to find best restaurant to dine? Why we must wait 1 hour in line for a slice of pizza?

Seems we could make time for everything!!!

We can’t keep ourselves in Shul and Classes for a longer time on Shabbat!!!! Why are we in a rush to go home but not in hurry to come back to Shul? Why can’t we Daven with more proper understanding and concentration at least on Shabbat? Why can’t we cut the time we waste on physical activities and spend more times in Bait Midrash and Shul on Shabbat?

We might have all the best excuses during the week but not on Shabbat. When was the last time that we said to ourselves let’s make this Shabbat more spiritual. Let’s make a goal to make Shabbat a day of accomplishment in spirituality and getting closer to Hashem by learning more and trying harder. Remember our Community is not just blessed with many kosher restaurants to choose from and Malls to shop & spend money in!!! We are also blessed with many places that offer spiritual growth & Torah learning from our dedicated Rabbis in this wonderful community!!! The light is on all day on Shabbat so let us use it properly!


The fundamental dimension of prayer is to ask G-d for our needs; the praise and thanksgiving which precede and follow our requests is merely a supplementary element of the mitzvah (Rambam; Cf. Shulchan Aruch Harav, which refers to the recitation of G-d’s praise as the “fundamental element of prayer”). This week’s Parsha — in which Moshe pleaded to Hashem for permission to enter Israel — gives us insight in the way we should approach G-d in prayer. As the Sifri notes “[Moshe] could have depended upon his good deeds. Instead, [he] asked G-d for a gift . . . How much more  so should we make requests [of G-d in this manner].” When asking for Hashem’s goodness, one should plead with humility; even when a person is deserving, he should not rely on his merits, but should ask G-d for unearned kindness.

Simcha Corner

As a professional photographer, Judy Salzberg takes a lot of pride in her pictures. Wherever she goes, she brings her pictures with her, to show off her work.

She and her husband Harold were invited to the Epsteins for Shabbat Dinner and Judy brought her pictures along.

“Wow,” said Mrs. Epstein, “these are really nice pictures. You must have a great camera.”

Fuming mad at the implication that her whole talent came from her camera. Judy waited until the end of the meal and then thanked her host, “Thank you, the Shabbat  meal was delicious,” and then as if an afterthought added, “you must have a great oven.”