Pinchas 5771 – Inspiring Places

A constant burnt-offering as offered on Har Sinai, for a pleasing aroma, a fire-offering to Hashem (Bamidbar 28:6)

Why does the Torah mention Har Sinai in the middle of the paragraph explaining the Karbon Tamid – the daily offering?

Where on Earth can a person most clearly see Hashem? Some people will say Niagara Falls. Others will think of Yellowstone National Park. There are people who will see the power of Hashem by visiting beautiful mountains, like the Swiss Alps. Other people will mention natural occurrences, like a hurricane or earthquake. Different people will feel Hashem’s Presence by looking at the wonders that humans can accomplish – like watching a space shuttle blast off or looking at the Eiffel Tower. Many people will say we can clearly see Hashem when we visit holy sites like the Kosel.

Although all of these answers are correct, there are other places where we can clearly see Hashem, but very few people will mention these. Look in your backyard at the ground. You will find these little green specks all over the place called grass. They are a miracle how they grow. And the trees in your yard – they start as a little seed and grow into colorful masterpieces. Go inside and flick a switch; suddenly, the room becomes bright. Electricity is a miracle! Watching a remote control work should amaze us! And even more amazing than all of these things is our human body. Think of everything that goes on behind the scenes under our skin. Cells are traveling at extremely fast speeds to make sure we continue to breathe and our hearts continue to beat. Our bodies are full of water and although we have many openings, water does not spill out. Try putting a little hole in a water balloon and see if the same happens. Ever wonder how we stand on two legs? Ever have a chair with two legs; it flops over. But not only can we stand on our two legs, but we can stay balanced while running at speeds over 15 miles per hour! The human body is clearly a miracle from Hashem, but why don’t we think about this?

When a person does something constantly, they become used to doing it. When something is new, it is exciting. This is why when we think of finding a place which proves Hashem’s Presense, we think of vacation locations we rarely visit, like Niagara Falls. I can guarantee you that if a person visited Niagara Falls everyday of their life, they would not think of it as anything very special. We have been connected to our miraculous bodies ever since we were born. Therefore, it does not seem like anything special to see something we always see. This is why Har Sinai is mentioned in the middle of the paragraph explaining the Karbon Tamid. Har Sinai was a very special and inspiring moment in our history – we heard lightning and saw thunder! The Torah is telling us that when we bring the Karbon Tamid every day, we should have the same excitement as we had at Har Sinai when we received the Torah. It is easy to become accustomed and not see the importance of bringing the Karbon Tamid, and therefore the Torah tells us to offer it like we were on Har Sinai.

Although we no longer have a Karbon Tamid, this can teach us a great lesson in our lives today. Although we see certain things every day, we should try not to become accustomed to them. Although we have always seen grass grow, electricity flow, and our bodies from head to toe, we should think of the many, many miracles they show. Hashem is everywhere – not only in places people rarely visit. Although vacations are great, if a person is unable to visit one of the beautiful, inspiring places this year, they can still see something inspiring. All they need to do is look closely at the things around them.

Good Shabbos!
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