We completed reading the book of Exodus last week, that book ending with the description of the presence of the Cloud of Glory in the Tabernacle. This week’s reading begins with G-d calling out to Moses and speaking to him from the Tabernacle.
The juxtaposition is intentional: G-d manifesting Himself in the clouds and calling out to Moses by name to teach him the ways of repentance and G-dly connection.
Clouds signify haziness and uncertainty, moments of confusion and worries.
From those depths, G-d calls out to us by name. In difficult and challenging situations, that is where we can find our calling.
It is worthwhile to note that the name the G-d uses to call to Moses, and the name by which he is widely known – Moshe – is not the name he was born with, rather the name given to him when he was pulled out of the water by Batya. During one of his darkest experiences, his moment of rescue defined his calling and revealed his mission.
G-d is telling us not to fear the darkness… but to realize that these are our defining moments.– Rabbi Shmulik Yeshayahu
We find our moments of redemption in our struggles. In the midst of darkness and desperation is where we uncover our essence, our destiny, and our connection to spirituality.
G-d is telling us not to fear the darkness, not to let our mistakes and struggles paralyze us, but to realize that these are our defining moments. We rise up to the challenge and embrace our calling.
The well-known story of the butterfly
A man found a cocoon of a butterfly. One day a small opening appeared. He sat and watched the butterfly for several hours as it struggled to squeeze its body through the tiny hole. Then it stopped, as if it couldn’t go further.
So the man decided to help the butterfly. He took a pair of scissors and snipped off the remaining bits of cocoon. The butterfly emerged easily but it had a swollen body and shriveled wings.
The man continued to watch it, expecting that any minute the wings would enlarge and expand enough to support the body, Neither happened! In fact the butterfly spent the rest of its life crawling around. It was never able to fly.
What the man in his kindness and haste did not understand: The restricting cocoon and the struggle required by the butterfly to get through the opening was a way of forcing the fluid from the body into the wings so that it would be ready for flight once that was achieved.
Sometimes struggles are exactly what we need in our lives. Going through life with no obstacles would cripple us. We will not be as strong as we could have been and we would never fly.