In this week's Torah portion, Behar- Bechukosai, we read, how being in exile, Hashem will remember the promise He made with our forefathers. "And I will remember My covenant with Yaakov and also My covenant with Yitzchak and also My covenant with Avraham..."
Why is the order of our forefathers reversed? First should be Avraham the oldest, then Yitzchak his son and finally Yaakov.
Sometimes it seems that all great people lived in the past. We feel that we are not so holy but our grandparents were holy. "How could I be expected to be great? How could small me make a difference?"
By reversing the order, the Torah is telling us, that though our grandparents were great, we possess qualities and abilities that they did not. If we tap in to our G-d given strengths, we can accomplish wonderful things. We can be great as well.
You may then ask, who am I to aspire for greatness?
One of the qualities Yaakov had over Avraham, was that he was the decendant of great and holy people. Yaakov was born great, all he needed to do was to reveal what he already was.
You too decend from Avraham, Yitzchak and Yaakov. You don't have to aspire for greatness, you were born that way. All you need to do is reveal who you are.
When I was diagnosed with ALS and loosing my ability to walk, talk, sing, dance, play the guitar, teach etc., I was faced with a dilemma: What purpose is there for me? What is there for me to accomplish? What difference can I possibly make?
The answer became clear with the outpouring of love all around me. I saw how wonderful you all are and witnessed greatness from the most unexpected places. It dawned upon me that if my crisis brought out greatness in others, perhaps if I dig deep I will find some way to make a difference too. I was pleasantly suprised to find that there were still ways for me to make a difference and what more, even greater than before.
You are greater than you think. Go make a difference.
Dedicated to the memory of Ita bas Shlomo Bistrizky, a woman of valor and mother of a great family.