9 Kislev 5781 / Wednesday, November 25, 2020 | Torah Reading: Vayeitzei
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If you want to succeed and you have decided that you’re willing to do whatever it takes to succeed – read, apply, and understand this article!


Practical Steps for Personal Prayer


If you don’t want to succeed, don’t read this article. This is an article only for winners. This is part three in a series of articles for those who want to succeed in life, step by step.


In the previous articles in this series, we discussed the first three steps to success in life: 1. Think Properly 2. Use the Right Tools and 3. Act Properly.


In the last article, I promised you that the path to success in life would be simple, and worth it. If you want to succeed and you have decided that you’re willing to do whatever it takes to succeed – read, apply, and understand this article.


Note: you did not read that in error. I did not say “read, understand, and apply.” The reason why I switched the order of the words, is that it is possible to understand personal prayer in theory, read endless articles and attend unlimited numbers of lectures, and still not apply the advice properly – and therefore, not win.


Why did we call this article “WIN!” and not “Fight!”? Because in the war against the Evil Inclination, someone who fights properly – WINS. We learn this right from the Holy Zohar, which says that the winner in the war against the Evil Inclination, is the one who i the one who holds his weapon in his hand, and never drops it.


Now that you have decided to hold your weapon in your hand, and now you will learn how to use the weapon – you have already won. Not on the path to winning – already won!


It’s So Easy, You Won’t Believe It


The practical application of daily personal prayer in order to WIN the war against the Evil Inclination is:


To make for yourself one hour every day to speak with Hashem!


If it’s first thing in the morning, or after you send the kids to school; if it’s in the evening after the busy day quiets down; or whenever it works for you. It also doesn’t matter where you are – it only matters that you are comfortable and alone. Make sure that you are ready to speak to Hashem – if you are too tired, take a nap first; if you are hungry, grab a bite to eat before you start.


Now, just speak to Hashem in your own words! Don’t plan too much, just speak from your heart. What’s good in your life? Say thank you. What bothers you? What is difficult for you? Share it with the Creator of the World, and ask for help and advice.


I don’t want to overwhelm you with tips and topics in your prayer, lest you lose the forest for the trees, and lose the focus on the amazing simplicity of personal prayer: To simply speak to God from your heart and soul, just like you would speak to your best friend of many years.


It seems so easy, that you might wonder how this could possibly be the super powered weapon against the Evil Inclination that it truly is.


The Best Partner There Is


Daily personal prayer enables you to be so much calmer and more relaxed, and at peace with yourself and your life. How wonderful it is to disconnect from the rat race. How incredible it is to share your life with God. When you involve Hashem in your life, you receive a Partner in your life!


Everyone knows just how much a good partner is necessary for success.


What better partner can you possibly have than God, the Creator of the World? He can do everything! He has all the money; He is the only true Doctor who can actually heal sickness as opposed to hide it, and without side effects; He has all the wisdom and can give you the best advice you could ever hope to receive; He is the Matchmaker, and He knows your address, and the phone number of your true soulmate. He also holds the key to life and death in His hands. He is the master of all souls, and only He decides when a child is born, and to whom.


Someone Who Believes in You


There is a deep saying that for a child to succeed in life, he needs just one single person to truly believe in him. This means that you could give a child everything physical – clothes, toys, tutors, etc. - and if you don't give him the emotional base he needs, which is belief in him – you haven’t given him anything. It’s like a brand-new car with all the bells and whistles, and lacks only an engine... On the flip side, if a child has even one person who believes in him, he will succeed, no matter what his roadblocks in life are.


Everyone one of us is essentially just a child – a child of Hashem. We also need to believe in ourselves and believe that others believe in us. Through daily personal prayer, we receive this great gift which enables us to succeed – the belief that Someone truly believes in us.


Experiencing Hashem as part of your life, is in other words – emuna. Experiencing Hashem’s presence includes realizing that Hashem loves us with an endless love, like a loving father who only wants to give us everything. Hashem is not a policeman waiting to write us a ticket, nor does He stand ready to strike a sinner with lightning (Editor’s Note: Remember that this all-too-common image of “god” is actually the idol Zeus, which needless to say, has nothing to do with the truth). Just the opposite – Hashem is so full of mercy! He waits patiently for us to return to Him. Someone who does daily personal prayer becomes connected to Hashem, and Hashem then only needs to send him gentle hints and reminders because he takes the time every day to interpret them without needing harsh wake-up calls.


Emuna is not something static that you either have, or don’t. Rather, emuna is dynamic; the more you speak with Hashem, the more you connect with Him, and experience Him. Now that you have connected to the best Partner there is – in return, your Partner gives you belief in yourself, good advice, a sense of fulfillment, happiness and more energy to continue.


Now Hashem is with you – and you WIN!

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