The Secret of Vitality (Pirkei Avos, 5:23)

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Yehudah ben Tema said: Be bold as a leopard; light as an eagle; swift as a deer; and strong as a lion to carry out the will of your Father in Heaven.”
 
This passage reveals the secret of empowerment and vitality. Usually, when a person expends his energy, he must rest in order to regain his strength.  While this is generally true of worldly endeavors, however spiritual matters follow a different dynamic. HaShem grants an extra measure of power and protection to people who are dedicated to spirituality.
 
The Prophet Isaiah said, “Those who trust in HaShem will experience a renewal of strength.” That is, when those who devote themselves to HaShem tire, they turn to HaShem for help. HaShem increases and replenishes their strength so that they can perform more good deeds.  
 
Accordingly, the text says: Be bold as a leopard – inspire yourself as well as others to study Torah and perform good deeds.  Now that we are enlightened with the knowledge that HaShem will grant us a surplus of strength, we should not desist from Mitzvoth due to lack of stimulation. Rather, we should feel confident that we can perform Mitzvoth with the “boldness of a leopard.”
 
Likewise, a period of running begets exhaustion. However, a person whose is engaged in a good deed or Mitzvah will not tire, rather he will “swift as a deer.”  In addition, his determination to complete Mitzvoth will be as mighty like the “strength of a lion.”
 
Not only does faith helps us to succeed in our affairs, even more, it awakens fresh supplies of energy so that can perform beyond our natural limits. Therefore, when we are fatigued we should pray for new reserves of strength and HaShem will renew our strength.
 
May we be blessed with love to do good both for Heaven and well as our fellow man. When we are aroused to fulfill HaShem’s will, He will provide us with endless supplies of energy, vigor, and strength (based on the commentary of Rabenu Yonah to Pirkei Avos).

 Today: When you are tired repeat aloud the verse: “Those who trust in HaShem will experience a renewal of strength.” 

Copyright © 2010 by Rabbi Zvi Miller and the Salant Foundation

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