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Motti Wilhelm

You are treasured

The author helps his son settle into the yeshiva dormitory. (courtesy)
The author helps his son settle into the yeshiva dormitory. (courtesy)

Last week, I brought my son Yossi to yeshiva for the first time. Everything was new: dorm life, yeshiva rules, and a rigorous schedule of 14-hour days.

In new spaces, we often feel self-conscious: Will we succeed? Will we be accepted? What will happen if we fail? Do we have what it takes?

* * *

When our people set out on becoming a nation, Hashem told us, “Vhiyisem Li Segulah – you will be my treasure.”

You are a treasure. You are a treasure, not because of what you do, nor because of who you can become.

You are a treasure, whether you effect change or lie still.

You are a treasure. Why? Because you are treasured.

We were assured by the creator of all things that our bond and our worth are more valuable than our performance. Once we knew our inherent worth, we were able to confidently enter the world stage and be an agent of change. Not to prove our worthiness or make a point, rather to simply bring a light and message the world needed to hear.

That is the message I shared with my son: your worth is inherent, and as parents, we will always value you. Your worth is not tied to whether you succeed or how others perceive. You are a treasure, because you are treasured. Just continue to grow and develop your potential.

* * *

We are all about to begin a new year. Thus, we read in the Torah this week how every day we are to feel and be cognizant of the fact that Hashem selected us as a treasure:

And the Lord has selected you this day to be His treasured people, as He spoke to you,

Not because of what we do, nor because of who we can become.

Whether we effect change or lie still, we are a treasure.

Why? Because we are treasured.

* * *

I welcome your thoughts and feedback. Reach me via email RabbiMotti@JPortland.com or WhatsApp 1-503-381-7119.

About the Author
Rabbi Motti Wilhelm received his diploma of Talmudic Studies from the Rabbinical College of Australia & New Zealand in 2003 and was ordained as a rabbi by the Rabbinical College of America and Israel’s former chief Rabbi Mordecha Eliyahu in 2004. He was the editor of Kovetz Ohelei Torah, a respected Journal of Talmudic essays. He lectures on Talmudic Law, Medical Ethics and a wide array of Jewish subjects and has led services in the United States, Canada, Africa and Australia. His video blog Rabbi Motti's Minute is highly popular as are his weekly emails. Rabbi Wilhelm and his wife Mimi lead Chabad SW Portland as Shluchim of the Lubavitcher Rebbe.
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