In this weeks parsha, Vayikra, we read about sacrifices brought to Hashem on the alter.
There were animal, bird, and flour offerings.
From all the offerings brought, the flour offering had a special name. It was called a Mincha, a gift.
What is so special about this offering that it is called a gift? What lesson can we take from this?
The Mincha was usually brought by the poor, being that they could afford neither animals nor birds.
For those who could afford animals or birds, bringing a sacrifice didn't change their lifestyle. Whereas for the poor person, it was truly giving up his basic needs. It was giving of himself in the purest sense and to Hashem that is a "gift".
There is giving of what you have and giving of who you are. Each of us should give of what we have. The question is: Are we also giving of who we are?
Hashem gave each of us talents, abilities and natural gifts. These are your's for as long as you have them. These were given to you so that you can accomplish your unique mission. Using these talents, abilities and natural gifts is giving of what you have.
Your essential self is by far greater then the gifts you possess. Allowing your neshama to come through and effect those around you, is giving of yourself.
Over the past two years I've been watching my abilities, talents and gifts slip away, wondering: What is the purpose of living if I am not able to do these things?
The answer became clear as people started to visit. With nothing to give of my talents, I was left with raw love and joy towards the visitors, and that apparently came through more powerfully than all the talents.
You don't need to wait to tap in to your essential self. You can allow it to come through in everything you do. Ah! Your essence is beautiful, let it come out. Now, that is a "gift" to Hashem.