Thursday, November 8, 2007

Why Did Chana Daven For an "Average Child?"


I received a beautiful mussar vort from Mr. Uberdox. It is copy/pasted below. Enjoy!

Dedicated by Manfred and Rose-Ellen Leventhal in loving memory of:
Yechiel ben Rav Pinchas, Gittel Rus bas Rav Meyer,
Meira Leah bas Rav Michael,
Elya Moshe ben Rav Yonah, Avraham Hillel ben Rav Yeshya - Z"L.

THE AGADATTA OF THE TALMUD\BRACHOS 31B

Rabbi Dimi said, "When Chanah, the Prophetess, prayed for a child, she prayed that her child should be average height, average build, average complexion, and average intelligence."

We all want our children to succeed in their life's mission. Chanah, who was childless for many years, surely wanted a child who would excel in Torah, character, and good deeds. If so, why did she pray for an "average child?"

In her modesty and wisdom, Chanah was aware that if a child stands out above his piers, he might cause distress to the other parents and children. Therefore, in a moving expression of sensitivity, she prayed for an average child in order to spare others the uncomfortable feeling of seeing another child "outshine" their own children.

Even after waiting many years for a child, she tempered her desire to bring a child into the world with consideration for the other members of her community. In this light, Chanah wanted a child who would be pleasing to both man and HaShem.

HaShem rewarded Chanah's heartfelt prayer by giving her a righteous son. Accordingly, she named him Shmuel, which means "HaShem has heard my prayer." Indeed, throughout the course of his lifetime he found special favor in HaShem's eyes. Ultimately, he became the greatest prophet of his time, yet conducted himself with great humility, earning the love and respect of his people.

May Chanah's remarkable compassion and goodness inspire us to be sensitive, kind, and considerate.

TODAY: Be careful to avoid words or actions that could be offensive to others.

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-Dixie Yid

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