18 Tamuz 5779 / Sunday, July 21, 2019 | Torah Reading: mattot
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Opportunity Knocks    

Opportunity Knocks

Modern-day society's propaganda would have you believe that you're clever and talented if you have money, and a loser if you don't; nothing could be farther from the truth…


There are so many ways to make money today. You can get a job. You can start a business. You can work as hard as you can and move up the corporate ladder, increasing your pay, benefits, and even accumulating huge exit options in the process. You can work all day, and dedicate your spare time to a side business. You can buy and sell stocks, art, jewelry, even domain names for a hefty profit.


There is not a day that goes by without someone becoming the member of the league of global millionaires.


Baruch Hashem!


This gives us the greatest gift of all.


Divine awareness.


I have seen the most intelligent people fall on their faces. I have seen the worst type of person weasel his way to the top. I saw average people become millionaires by sheer luck, and others try as hard as they could, and do well . . . but not in proportion to the work they put in.


If you see how the "working world" operates, you have ample proof that Hashem decides who succeeds and when.


There is something in common with all the people I just described – they put in their own effort to produce results. They face an intense temptation to label what comes their way a result of their actions.


The greatest opportunity to amass serious wealth in this world is to take to heart that there is only one manner in which a man eats bread:


Hashem's compassion!


There is more wealth in the world today than there ever has been, and more wealthy people since time itself began. There are more upscale jobs in almost every city on earth, expanding local economies to give anyone, regardless of their level of education, business acumen, or social class a chance to rise to the top.


Never has it been easier to write off G-d as has having anything to do with our financial success.


That's our opportunity! To find Hashem beyond the strongest layers of darkness. It's also our challenge.


Without even thinking about it, this world forces down our throats the argument that in order to have money, you have to produce it yourself. Along with this propaganda comes the other side of the argument: if you aren't making money, it's because you are incapable. We are pounded with the subtle message that you are better than everyone else if you generate more, and woefully substandard if you aren't.


The test in our generation is to understand that it all comes from Hashem, and every case is based on its own specific set of circumstances. He grants livelihood. He creates opportunity. He decides who will succeed in seizing an opportunity, and who will succeed in terms of wisdom, life experience, and coming closer to Him in understanding that no matter what, action always bears fruit. He will bless someone with wealth, and quite often, bless someone with a lack of wealth both for the same reason: as a catalyst to bring them closer to Him.


It all comes from G-d. Our role is to do what we can to support ourselves and our families to a reasonable degree, all the while internalizing that everything comes from Hashem. A new job comes from Hashem. Getting fired from your old one comes from G-d. A successful venture is decreed from Above, and so is a bankruptcy.


Chovot HaLevavot teaches that the highest level of emuna is where we see no difference between good and bad. They are merely different approaches Hashem takes to bring us along in our mission in life.


Our challenge is to take it all in with faith, and without worry. With joy, and without anger. That's how we seize the ultimate opportunity for something immensely precious: to make this world feel like the Next World at all times.



* * *

Dovber Halevi runs the website http://www.proudlycandid.com/. On it you can find 1,001 Reasons to Love Israel.

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