On the 20th of the second month, the Cloud rose up over the Mishkan (Bamidbar 10:11)
For almost one full year, the Jews camped in Sinai. Then, on the 20th of Iyar, they started traveling and suddenly, things started turning disastrous. This week’s parsha includes the Jews complaining about the “mon” and a plague of quail comes. Then, Miriam speaks Lashon Hara and is quarantined for a week. In next week’s parsha, the Spies return with a negative report on Eretz Yisrael, which causes the Jews to walk in the desert for 40 years. In two weeks, we learn the story of Korach, which caused the earth to open up and swallow many sinners.
All of these episodes have one thing in common – it is that the people did not look at things positively.
The “mon” was a special gift from G-d. It tasted like almost anything the person wanted it to taste like. It arrived on many people’s doorstep every morning. It was so holy that people no longer needed to use the bathroom. People did not need to go to work to get it. It was simply amazing – but people complained about this.
Miriam’s brother separated from his wife because he might be called by Hashem at any moment. Miriam did not look with a good eye at her brother and spoke Lashon Hara about him.
The Spies looked at Eretz Yisrael and mocked it. They found huge fruit which was a blessing, but they used it to made fun of Holy Land. They did not look positively at Eretz Yisrael.
Korach was wealthy and wise. There was so little that he lacked, but he complained that he wanted more. He did not look at all of the good he had in the world.
The lesson to us is that we need to look more positively at everything we have.
This past week, the tire light on my wife’s car dashboard went on… again. It was on about three weeks ago so I filled the tires with air. Now it went on again, which means we need to buy new tires. I hate buying new tires. I hate using my free time to drive the car to the mechanic and then spending a few hundred dollars to get car fixed.
Then, as I was thinking about this week’s Divrei Simcha and I realized I need to look more positively at this situation. First, I have a car! Baruch Hashem I am able to travel at speeds which years ago people could not even imagine. I can visit my in-laws who live 40 miles away in under an hour. I can get to my office much, much quicker than if I needed to ride a bike or walk. I am able to drive to Walt Disney World in a few hours. This car is a blessing!
Also, the light on the dashboard is a blessing. Imagine I did not have that light to tell me that the tires were low. I’m not very good with cars and probably would not realize that the tire was low until it was flat. Being on the road and having a flat tire would have been a huge headache – as it would take up more time and money than just getting them replaced. Baruch Hashem I have a little yellow warning light that tells me when I need to have my tires replaced.
It’s easy to look negatively at many things in this world, but if we take a few minutes to think, we will see that the world is a beautiful place. Let’s look positively at everything that happens to us, because everything is really good!
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