Parashat Toldot

By Rabbi Yosef Shemtov: We see in this week’s Torah portion that Rivka was barren and was not able to have children. The pasuk says that Yitzhak prayed to Hashem by the side of his wife Rivka, meaning both of them prayed constantly. The pasuk then says Hashem accepted Yitzhak’s tefillah and Rifka became pregnant. Rashi states that Hashem listened to Yitzhak’s tefillah, but not to Rifka’s. The Rabbis give different answers for this.

We know that there is a concept that when someone prays for somebody else first, even though he himself needs the very same thing, Hashem first grants to the one who prayed because he cared for somebody else. Yitzhak was praying for Rivka and was asking Hashem to please let Rivka be the mother of his children. However Rivka was praying for herself.

How important it is that before we pray we think of other people who need salvation and pray for them. We also see from here that a person should never be disappointed and should keep on praying. Prayer can change our destiny and can make the impossible possible.

Shabbat Shalom