Join our weekly Peninim on the Torah list!

הצור תמים פעלו... קל אמונה ואין עול צדיק וישר הוא

The Rock! Perfect is His work… G-d of faith without iniquity, righteous and fair is He. (32:4)

Download PDF

Hashem created a perfect world in which every creation receives everything that is necessary, not only for it to subsist, but also for it to attain its maximum potential in this world.  Thus, if a person has not been granted certain qualities essential for success in a certain field or endeavor, this is a clear indication that he does not need them to achieve success.  On the other hand, if he has been blessed with certain abilities that exceed the average, it is proof that Hashem wants him to use these gifts to serve Him.

The custom in Radin on Motzei Shabbos was to daven Maariv, followed by the Havdalah service of the Chafetz Chaim, after which he would greet people and wish them a Gutt Voch, Good Week.  He then went into his office, where he would listen to the requests and petitions brought by those who had gathered there.  One Motzei Shabbos, a father presented himself with his ten-year old son before the Chafetz Chaim to request a blessing.  Apparently, as the father explained to the venerable sage, his son had no desire whatsoever to learn Torah.  The father was beside himself.  His son’s success in Torah was his priority in life.

The Chafetz Chaim asked the father, “Is your son capable of grasping the material as taught by his rebbe?”

“Yes, yes,” replied the father.  “Every rebbe that has taught him has indicated that he is quite smart and would have no problem rising to the top of the class.”

Hearing this, the Chafetz Chaim turned to the boy and said, “My child, you should know that if you do not learn well, you will chas v’shalom, Heaven forbid, catalyze a question concerning the Ribono Shel Olam, Creator.  Surely, you do not want to be the cause of such a question.”

The Chafetz Chaim waited a moment, allowing his statement to sink into to the mind of the boy.  He then explained,  “The Torah writes that Hashem is: ‘Perfect in His work’; ‘without iniquity’; ‘righteous and fair.’  Everything in Creation has a purpose.  Hashem created every person with the innate abilities to succeed in the area of life’s endeavor best suited /chosen for him.  (In other words, someone who is destined to be a great Torah scholar will be granted the ability to achieve his goal.  Someone who is not gifted with exceptional abilities is meant to excel in the area for which he is best suited.) You have been blessed with an exceptional mind.  If you do not use your mind, it will atrophy, and you will be relegated to a vocation that is unsuited for you.  People will ask:  ‘Why did Hashem give such a brilliant mind to someone whose vocation is not intellectually demanding?’ Do you want to be the catalyst of questioning about Hashem?”

The boy was sufficiently astute to take the hint.

Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Join our weekly Peninim on the Torah list!

You have Successfully Subscribed!