Volume 3 Number 10 – March 14th, 2020 – 18 Adar 5780
161 Lamp & Lantern Village in Chesterfield (636) 527-1121
Orli Axelbaum will donate a percentage of all sales at Oli’s Boutique on Sunday, March 22 to our Sisterhood! This open house event marks the Spring kickoff of Sisterhood s 5th Annual Dine ‘N’ Style Luncheon and Fashion Show to be held August 30 at NHBZ.
Stop by Shop Support our Sisterhood!
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Next NHBZ Book Club
Next current book is “The Only Woman in the Room,” the powerful bestseller by Marie Benedict, the group meets on April 27. All women are welcome! For more info contact Terri Schnitzer.
Parshas Ki Tisa – Measure Your Worth
– adapted from Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis (AISH.org)
Parashas Ki Sisa impresses upon us that not only is it possible for us to make a difference in this world, but it is our imperative to do so. The portion opens with the words “Ki sisa … – When you take a census of the Children of Israel … v’nasnu – every man shall give Hashem an atonement for his soul …. This shall they give – everyone who passes through the census, a half-shekel ….”
At first glance, this commandment to count the Jewish people appears puzzling. Surely the Almighty G-d knows our number, so what purpose is there in a census? And, why should the people be counted through a “half-shekel”?
This profound teaching can be a life-transforming experience through which we can make that difference. Ki sisa – the words with which the Torah commands the census – does not literally mean “counting,” but rather “the elevation of one’s head,” – when we realize that we count, our heads are lifted up and we are elevated. The realization that we can impact on the destiny of the world, that our words and deeds have significance, charges us with responsibility and allows us to grow and become better people.
Our Sages offer many explanations as to how we may best achieve this elevation. When we make a spiritual accounting by carefully scrutinizing our lives, then we transcend ourselves and grow spiritually. By having to contribute half a shekel rather than a full shekel to the census, we are challenged to realize that we are all only halves and that our nation is strong only when its individual parts join in unity. It follows, then, that when we make a decision to pray with greater intensity and devote more time to Torah study, to be more scrupulous about the observance of Shabbos and kashruth, to make an effort to control our tempers and to desist from lashon hara (gossip and slander), to reach out with chesed (loving-kindness) and patience, then we are not only elevating our individual selves, but we are actually tipping the scales in favor of our people and the world.
The half-shekel that we are called upon to donate is also symbolic of a heart broken in half, which results from the awareness that sometimes we fail in our mission of fulfilling G-d’s commandments. That realization is in and of itself a measure of atonement for our souls. As King David proclaimed in his psalm: “G-d is close to the broken hearted ….”
Finally, the word v’nasnu – “and they shall give” – is a Hebrew palindrome, a word or phrase that reads the same backward and forward, reminding us that that which we give always comes back and enriches us. When we give, our souls expand and our world becomes larger and more meaningful, bringing blessing to ourselves and to our people.
For information or to join Sisterhood, call the NHBZ office at 314-991-2100, ext. 3, or email: firstname.lastname@example.org