Moses’ Handicap

(Photo Credit: Andy Blumenthal)
(Photo Credit: Andy Blumenthal)

I really liked the speech in synagogue today by the visiting Rabbi Hayyim Kassorla and wanted to share and adapt from it.  It was about how you choose a leader.

Of course, one of the most important things that we all look for is that the leader be self-confident and assured in his abilities to do the job.  If he is confident, it inspires confidence in the rest of us.

Yet what’s fascinating in the Torah is that when Hashem choose Moshe Rabbeinu to lead the Jewish people, he was anything but confident in his ability to get the Jews out of Egyptian servitude and lead them to the Promised Land.  Instead, he told Hashem that he is just a nobody [a mere shepherd], he is handicapped in his speech, and G-d should choose someone [anyone] else!

The lesson here, perhaps, is that precisely because Moses was handicapped in these ways that G-d choose him to rise to the occasion and overcome his impairments and impediments.

And in truth, we are all handicapped in one way or another.  One person comes from a meager financial background, another has no education, and yet another has any of a host of physical, mental, or emotional challenges.  Essentially, we all have something that rightfully can hold us back.

But still G-d chooses us to do His bidding.  Whether it’s leading the Jews out of Egypt or standing up and doing what’s right in situations that we are confronted with every day, we are asked to go beyond our handicap.

G-d didn’t let Moshe’s handicap stop him, and we need to have faith that He won’t let our handicaps prevent us from carrying out our mission.

We all are here for a reason.  G-d created us and sustains us.  We need to gain strength in ourselves, not that we are haughty and arrogant, but rather in our belief that G-d has a bigger plan for us, wants us to succeed, and we need to go like Moshe, even to confront the mightiest of Pharaohs, overcome the strongest of armies, and make the greatest of Journeys to fulfill G-d’s purpose for us and to overcome whatever our handicap is.

About the Author
Andy Blumenthal is business and technology leader who writes frequently about Jewish life, culture, and security. All opinions are his own.
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