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Thursday, 9 May, 2013 - 4:45 pm


Raise the head of all the congregation of the children of Israel... by the number of names (Bamidbar 1:2)

A census expresses two paradoxical truths. On the one hand, it implies that each individual is significant. On the other hand, a head-count is the ultimate equalizer: each member of the community, from the greatest to the lowliest, counts for no less and no more than "one." G-d repeatedly commands Moses to count the Jewish people to emphasize both their individual worth--the fact that no single person's contribution is dispensable--as well as their inherent equality. (The Chassidic Masters)

As parents, we are given the opportunity to highlight the unique contributions each one of our children make to the family. Depending on the personality of each child, some are more naturally recognized for specific qualities while it might take extra effort on our part to uncover others’. With the counting in this week’s Parshah we are refocused to believe in the vital and indispensable gift which every Jew possesses. Together with that is the awareness that in our highest essence, we are all equally G-dly. One individual’s virtues does not make their essence any greater than another’s.

This Shabbos, verbally acknowledge something special about your child which you might have overlooked lately. Appreciate the value of that specific characteristic, and how it makes your family beautiful. “Every time you smile at the baby, it teaches him how to smile! Thank you!”… “I appreciate how you remember to clear your place at the table! You are helping to make our home into a Sanctuary for Hashem.” Every child has something else which can be underlined, and we must be aware that each one of those are equally special.

May we merit a time when our G-dly essence will be openly revealed with the coming of Moshiach Now!

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