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Weekly Parsha Summary

Hashem reveals Himself to Moshe. Employing the “four expressions of redemption,” He promises to take out the Children of Israel from Egypt, deliver them from their enslavement, redeem them, and acquire them as His own chosen people at Har Sinai; He will then bring them to the land He promised to the Patriarchs as their eternal heritage.

Moshe and Aaron repeatedly come before Pharaoh to demand in the name of Hashem, “Let My people go, so that they may serve Me in the wilderness.” Pharaoh repeatedly refuses. Aaron’s staff turns into a snake and swallows the magic sticks of the Egyptian sorcerers. Hashem then sends a series of plagues upon the Egyptians.

The waters of the Nile turn to blood; swarms of frogs overrun the land; lice infest all men and beasts. Hordes of wild animals invade the cities; a pestilence kills the domestic animals; painful boils afflict the Egyptians. For the seventh plague, fire and ice combine to descend from the skies as a devastating hail. Still, “the heart of Pharaoh was hardened and he would not let the children of Israel go, as Hashem had said to Moshe.”

Rabbi's Shabbos Message

Relieving Stress

"And Moshe spoke to the children of Israel and they did not listen to Moshe for anguish of spirit and hard work" (Shemos 6:9)

Rav Meir Simcha HaCohen explains that they did not listen to Moshe when he told them about a brighter future in Eretz Yisroel.

Why? One would think that a promise of such a future would help relieve the distress that the nation was under!

Rav Simcha explains that this is because when an individual is going through a hard time, he's not yet ready to hear about a "rosy" future. His immediate concerns are with the situation he's currently in. Only after the pain and suffering has been lifted, can he see the future. That is why in pasuk 13, Hashem told Moshe to simply tell them that they will be taken out of Egypt, without any mention of their future. They were in misery and their focus was to be taken out of misery. The long term future was not on their radar at that moment.

This is an important lesson to be exercised when dealing with people who are in distress. Their focus is not on 'later on'. They do not want to hear "everything will be okay". They want to hear how to handle and possible get out of the current situation that they are in. That is their concern and if you wish to help them, it will be your concern as well.

I wish you all a great Shabbos!