Thursday, March 15, 2012



Erev Shabbos Kodesh Parshios Vayakhel-Pekudei/Parah

Mevorchim Chodesh Nissan

22 Adar 5772/March 16, 2012

It is no coincidence that Purim precedes Pesach, and it’s not just to test women’s nerves to see how fast they can get rid of all the shalach manos they just received before Pesach.

Chazal explain that Pesach is the anniversary of the birth of our nationhood. When G-d took us out of Egypt, more than physical redemption it was spiritual liberation. A nation of slaves was suddenly transformed into an elite and holy people.

When a baby is born all its food must be sterilized and it has a very limited diet. So too on Pesach we cannot partake of most of the foods we eat all year, for on Pesach we are like newborns emerging from the womb.

I have often thought that if Pesach is our national birth than Purim is the pre-natal vitamin’ which the mother takes while she is expecting to ward off all infection.

Amalek is the ultimate spiritual infection and faith in Hashem is the antidotal vitamin which strengthens our spiritual immune system. Purim and the story of Megillas Esther train us to seek out the hidden hand of Hashem beneath the surface. It is a story of divine subtleties, noticeable only to the discerning eye of one who understands that G-d is King, not Achashveirosh.

Rav Shimshon Pinkus zt’l notes that the Matanos Laevyonim and Shalach Manos we give to others on Purim reflects what G-d grants us constantly. The basic necessities of life – food, clothing, and health are His Matanos Laevyonim to us. Everything beyond that is the Shalach Manos He grants us, solely out of love.

Last week I went to Costco to purchase a new video camera so we could have it for Purim. I bought the only camera of that quality that they had left. It was marked down 80 dollars because it was the one that was on display. When I took it out of the box later that night I found that all the wires and accessories were there save for the charger. What good is a camera if it’s dead?

So the next day Chani went back to Costco. The saleswoman recognized the camera and quipped ‘Oh your husband bought it yesterday’. But she insisted that all the parts were there. A second salesman came by and he too said that if it wasn’t in the box they didn’t have it because they never leave the charger in the display case. He said she could return the camera but that was the best they could do. As the three stood there, Phil, a third salesman, happened to walk by and notice the camera, “Oh you came back for the charger? I figured you would.” It turns out Phil had noticed the charger at the display case earlier that day. That he happened to see it in the case and that he happened to walk by at just that moment – what are the odds? That was simply Shalach Manos from G-d.

Purim is the vitamin of faith we ingest so we can proceed en route for our birth on Pesach.

As we put away all the Shalach Manos we have received we must hold onto the spiritual Shalach Manos and lessons of Purim, and take them with us into the great days of redemption that lie ahead.

Shabbat Shalom & Good Shabbos,

R’ Dani and Chani Staum