As we begin the story of the exodus from Mitzrayim (Egypt), we are introduced to Moshe (Moses). When he sought a mate, he went to a well, just as his ancestors had done; Eliezer, the servant of Avraham (Abraham), and Yaakov (Jacob) had met the future matriarchs at wells. The Midrash points out a stark contrast between Yaakov's arrival in the city of Charan and Moshe's appearance at the well in Midyan. Rochel (Rachel) was able to move about freely and no one bothered her, while the daughters of Yisro (Jethro) were not safe when they went out to the well. Commentaries explain that the difference was that Avraham had lived in Charan and his moral character left an indelible mark on the place for generations to come.
We see from this a valuable two-fold lesson. We often wonder what kind of impact we can make in the world, as often we don't have an audience or an "official" following. However, we must realize that people are affected by what they see. Our proper and ethical actions make a significant impression, particularly on those closest to us. We can also adversely affect those around us. Likewise, we are highly influenced by our environment, and when we have the opportunity to choose where and with whom to spend our time, we should do so wisely.
In short, each person must recognize that he/she is very important and that his/her actions make a difference in the world.
Have a great Shabbos.
Leave a Reply.
Rabbi Naftali Karp
Every week Rabbi Karp sends out thoughts about the weekly Torah portion. Enjoy!