Shlomo Ezagui

Divine Providence. Finding Favor in God’s eyes

Erik Karits

The holy Baal Shem Tov was teaching his students the concept of Divine Providence, explaining that everything, down to the smallest particle, is under His watchful eye. “The whole world is filled with His glory. There is no place void of Him.” The students struggled to comprehend how such a great God could be concerned with the tiniest speck in the universe.

The Baal Shem Tov decided to make a demonstration. They all went outside, and he instructed his students to follow the first leaf to get blown off the tree. As it fell to the ground, they followed it to the curb of the road. Lying underneath the leaf was a worm baking under the sun.

The Baal Shem Tov explained that from the six days of creation, it was already designed and predestined for this leaf from that tree to fall off at this moment and be blown by the wind to shield this worm.

If God were a finite being, little things would be less important than big, significant things. However, since God is infinite, whether something is big or small to us, to God, they both have the same significance. Everything in the universe — everything — has equal value before God, the infinite Creator of all things.

Whatever a person sees or hears, whether or not it seems significant, has been precisely orchestrated to appear before or be heard by that person at that moment. Divine Providence is the root of this occurrence. It is God’s Purpose for creating the world at large, and this person in particular, that we should all have the opportunity to draw closer to the Divine Purpose and perfection we were created for.

In the Book of Proverbs, King Solomon says, “God prepares the footsteps of a person, and man, what does he understand of (God’s) ways?” God is behind every step a person takes. He has prepared everything for this step to be taken, giving strength for this person to employ to fulfill the divine Purpose behind the moment. Imagine the enormous responsibility! Imagine the incredible opportunity!

And if a person claims it is too difficult, this person has many questions to be asked regarding the times or the place of his current struggle. Remember the end of the above-quoted verse: “And man, what does he (can he) understand of (the infinite ways) of God?” The facts remain. What God intentionally placed on your plate is precisely what is intended for you now.

In the book of Psalms, King David says, “It is from God that a man’s footsteps are established, and it is his (this person’s) path that (God) desires.” Every person is a messenger of Divine Providence, tasked with utilizing the strength and good health he has been granted to promote why we were blessed and awarded with the gift of life in the first place. The choice to use each moment appropriately is in the hands of every person. When we exercise our free choice and properly use the moment, “God will select and desire the ways of this person.”

Although everything inherently has equal importance before God, because God proclaimed, “I will favor those who follow my dictates,” those who do so become more prominent in the eyes of God for blessings and favorable attention.

About the Author
Rabbi Shlomo Ezagui is an author and lecturer. "A Spiritual Soul Book" ( & "Maimonides Advice for the 21st Century" ( In 1987, Rabbi Ezagui opened the first Chabad Center in Palm Beach County, Florida, and the first Orthodox Synagogue on the island of Palm Beach, Florida.
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