Thursday, November 27, 2014

VaYeitzei: The Son and the Wallet

After Jacob left his home in Beersheba, he vowed to serve God faithfully if God would: (a) protect him on his journey, (b) provide him with food and clothing, and (c) return him to his father's house.

God, in fact, appeared to Jacob in a vision, promising: "I am with you; I will protect you wherever you go and bring you back to this land."

This covered Jacob's first and last requests. But what about the food and clothing?

Cash for the Trip

Michael needed to send his young son on a long journey. He prepared everything the boy would require for the trip, including a wallet with cash to pay for various expenses on the way.

But before his son headed out, Michael heard disturbing news. Bandits were making trouble on the roads, attacking and robbing innocent travelers. Michael decided that the situation was too dangerous for his son to travel on his own; so, last minute, he changed the plan. He would join his son on the journey.

As they started out early the next morning, the boy suddenly looked nervous. "Father, where is the money purse you prepared for me? I will need it for my expenses on the road!"

Michael smiled. "Son, what do you need money for? I will be with you on the trip. I will pay for everything we need."

"I am with you"

The father's response is exactly what God told Jacob: "I am with you, and I will protect you..." Since God would be with Jacob, it was no longer necessary for Him to promise food and clothing; God would watch over all of Jacob's needs. "I will not abandon you," God promised Jacob. I will always be there to answer your prayers.

(Adapted from Mishlei Yaakov, pp. 66-67)