To our 9:00 am Shabbat Ark of Prayer and the Mishpacha within,
This week’s parsha is Balak: Numbers 22:2-25:9, Micah 5:6-6:8
We see in Numbers that Balak, King of Moab, feels his life is about to become unmanageable and perhaps even end due to the arrival of the Israelites. So he sends for Balaam, a prophet that sells his services for money, to curse Israel in the name of the L-rd so Balak can defeat Israel.
But Balaam tells King Balak that he will not be able to help him. But the King thinks that the L-rd would be more likely to grant his request in three different geographic locations. Each time G-d, through Baalam, refuses to curse Israel. In the recovery world this is called “taking a geographic cure”.
People think that their problems are caused by the people, places and things at a given location and that if they change locations, things will get better. At least in my life, that has never been the case. My problems are caused by me due to how I choose to interact with people, places and things. So although I can change physical locations, I have not changed me, hence my problems continue but with new participants.
And we see that with the King. Instead of repenting, reaching out to the G-d of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and asking for mercy, he hangs onto his fear and arrogance and his desire to destroy Israel.
But we know that two doves came from this area; Ruth, loyal to Naomi, faithful to G-d and in the lineage of our Master; Naamah, wife of King Solomon, mother of his heir Rehoboam, and the only one of Solomon's wives to be mentioned as having borne a child.
Although an unrepentant Balak eventually dies when Joshua begins his conquest of Canaan, it is not unreasonable to believe that he might have lived, and certainly had a less contentious relationship with Israel, if he had knelt before G-d and offered allegiance.
I find that same principle operative in my life. As I am willing to depend on G-d to lead me through my troubles, I can count on Him to provide me the wisdom, courage and strength to survive the toughest situations. I’ve found that my level of fear equals my distance from G-d and is an indicator of my spiritual fitness at that moment.
So my part is to do the actions and tasks G-d sets before me and to trust Him for the outcome. Even if the outcome is not as I had hoped, I have the solid confidence that G-d thought it was important for me and those around me, to have that outcome. I can not explain why, but knowing that the outcome is as G-d intended, whatever it is, provides peace to me when I know I have done my part.
So if I have relational problems at Temple, in my marriage, with neighbors, or at work, the solution is not to leave those relationships but to turn to G-d and submit my ego, fears and hopes to Him.
I hope any of you that are able, will join the 9:00 am Shabbat Teva Tefilah.
Blessings to you and yours as you celebrate July 4th.
Your brother in Yeshua in the TEVA TEFILAH,
Posted on Thu, July 3, 2014