Rabbi David Paskin
It's the Little Things
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From Rabbi David
Sometimes we look for huge leaps in growth; tremendous advancement in capacity or "Mount Sinai" moments of realization. As people of faith, we expect profound moments and exceptional experiences. After all, didn't our ancestors witness God split the sea and rain down manna from heaven?
This week's Torah portion, Pekudei, recalls a million little details associated with building the Mishkan - the Tabernacle - in the wilderness. If having to listen to all of these details wasn't boring enough, this is actually the second time we're hearing them. The Torah has already explained all of this. So why bother here - or at all.
As it turns out, there is a deep lesson hidden in all this minutiae. Life isn't about the big moments - it's about the little ones. It's essentially, the opposite of don't miss the forrest for the trees. Judaism says, "don't miss the trees for the forrest." We can spend our entire lives looking up to the heavens waiting for a life-changing miracle or we can take each day, look around at this profoundly amazing existence we have been given and see the little miracles all around us.
The next time your child wants to examine a leaf, read the same book for the 100th time or marvel at the wind or rain - be in that miraculous moment with them. Appreciate all of the details, even if you've heard or seen them before. It is after all these details that are the foundation of everything holy.