In this week's parsha, Lech Lecha, we are introduced to Abram, the first of our forefathers. Throughout the next two parshiot, Abram experiences many challenges and ‘tests’ from G-d. The first test and challenge that Abram received is to “Go from your land, from your birthplace, and from your father's house to the land which I will show you”. Here, G-d asks Abram to leave his home and comfort zone for the greater good of his people.
Abram then goes to Egypt because of a famine. In Egypt, Sarai is taken to the Pharaoh's palace. Abram prevents his own execution by claiming he is the brother of Sarai, as opposed to her husband. However, due to a plague, Pharaoh cannot touch Sarai, and she is immediately given back to Abram along with gold, silver, and cattle as compensation.
Another challenge that Abram faces is not being able to conceive a child with his wife, Sarah, and yet he is later promised to have one named Issac. At the end of the parsha, Abraham undergoes the painful circumcision procedure at the age of 99 as a sign of a covenant between G-d and Abraham. Despite all these challenges and tests, Abraham remains resilient and faithful that it is for the greater good.
All of us go through many challenges. This year, more than most, has presented all of us, individually and collectively, with more challenges than we might have wanted. A lesson to learn from this parsha is that we must look at all our challenges as an opportunity to grow as individuals and as part of a wider community.
When going through tough times we must never give up and remain faithful that things often work out the way they do for a reason. With these challenges come great opportunities, and we must be alert to them.
Benjamin, Grade 12