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The Concept of Reward and Patience

"And Hashem spoke to Moses and Aaron, and he charged them to (lead) Bnei Yisrael (Children of Israel)" 1

This week's wpe9.gif (923 bytes) portion alludes to a few important characteristics of a good leader. Two of  these characteristics involve humility and hard work. We can learn this from the way that HaShem (G-D) tests a man before He confers high office upon him. Last week's parsh.jpg (2373 bytes) says of wpeC.gif (953 bytes), "And he (Moses) lead the flock to the farthest end of the wilderness" (Shemoth 3:1) in order to keep them from despoiling the fields of others. Therefore Hashem took him to tend Israel, as is said "Thou didst lead Thy people like a flock, by the hand of Moses and of Aaron" (Ps. 77:21). 3 The aggadic literature also notes the time that Moses carried a tired sheep back to his flock on top of his shoulders.  Thus, good leadership must require hard work and humility. According to Numbers 12:3, Moses was "exceedingly humble, more than any man on the face of the earth".

Another characteristic of good leadership is patience. RaShY says that Hashem commanded Moses and Aaron to lead the Israelites gently and to be patient with them. The Chofetz Chayim supports this concept by saying that "it is essential to remain calm and speak pleasantly when you want to influence someone to become a better person." (Chomas Hadas, ch. 6).

We should all merit to reach a time when everyone of us will possess these traits (whether or not we attain the high office)...And ultimately this will tip the scales to bring about the coming of the mash2.jpg (2511 bytes).



1
Shemoth 6:13
2
Shemoth R. 2:3  (see also Ps. 11:5)

3
Shemoth R. 2:3

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