Our Portion

April 11, 2024

Our prayers come in many different shapes and forms.

There are the requests we made when we were younger for outcomes that were so inconsequential but felt so important at the time. Please help me win the raffle. Please could rebbi pick me. Please make it sunny today.

There are the frantic, whispered Please help us make the bus or Please help me find parking—stressful times, hopeful requests. Hashem, this pressure is fleeting, but it feels so enormous—please, help me!

And then there are those requests that come from the depth of our being. A tefillah that’s pleaded because our lives depend on it. We beg with the knowledge that our very essence relies on it.

The essence of the prayer “V’sein chelkeinu imahem” hides behind the simplicity of the words. We utter this phrase countless times, flitting over the sweet words, yet the depth is unimaginable. The stakes are too high, and the other option isn’t even up for discussion. Yes, our lives depend on this—yes, we need this so badly—please, Ribono Shel Olam, please grant us the opportunity to be part of them!

We have many different roles in life. It’s inevitable—we each have our unique tafkid, handcrafted specifically for us by our Creator. We embrace the role we’ve been given, and we try to make our Father proud.

Yet, no matter what are tafkid is—no matter which role Hashem wanted us to fill in his am hanivchar—we beg Hashem to ensure that we never lose our connection. We plead with Him, “Don’t let us lose our identity as a person connected with You and Your Torah!”

Yanky sat at his desk, going through the numbers. This deal was too good to be true—it was the deal of a lifetime! As he applied for the funding though, he realized he would need to fix the numbers a bit to get it through. His partner assured him that everyone does it, but Yanky called his rosh yeshivah.

“Yanky, the choice is yours. Which world do you want to be part of?”

The answer was clear to him.

Rivky knows that every afternoon when Totty gets home from work, he rushes out to his chavrusa. Totty works very hard, and she knows how he struggles to supply for the family, but he always says that learning is what gives him life. She doesn’t fully understand what that means, but she knows he always comes home from his chavrusa in a happier and more relaxed mood, fully rejuvenated. She associates Totty’s learning with warmth and connection.

V’sein chelkeinu imahem

The simple meaning of the words may sound like an extremely lofty goal—Hashem, please make my portion be among them, the lomdei Torah. But no, it’s the most basic need and request. I must be associated and a part of them, for if not, chas v’shalom, I can lose myself.

Moishy signed on the dotted line. B’chasdei Hashem, they closed the deal! The atmosphere in the room was very spirited. But it was just a few minutes, and then Moishy’s simple celebration turned into something much more. On his way home, Moishy called his wife, ‘I’m just stopping by the yeshivah for a few minutes. I need the chizuk.”

After just a few minutes of being “back home” in yeshivah, he left, mechuzak and committed.

Chayale visited Totty’s office and inquired about the old Gemara on the corner of Totty’s desk. “That’s the Gemara from the last mesechta I learned when I was in kollel. I look at it before every decision I make to remind myself who I am.”

But it comes with so many more benefits. Associating yourself with the finest and most special of Klal Yisrael says who you really are and what you really want in this world. It’s an opportunity to proudly show Hashem where our true loyalty lies.

It was a time of war, and the enemy was running through the streets. The soldiers took up their positions on the front lines, risking their lives to defend the kingdom. There were those, however, who weren’t the front-line soldiers, yet they proudly did their part, hanging flags on their doorposts, supporting the soldiers and the war effort. When the war was fought and victory was assured, the king rewarded the soldiers and their supporters as well, showing his gratitude for those who proudly stood up for his name in that most difficult time.

We live in a world where a Torah-true life is not the easiest to uphold. There are myriads of challenges from all sides, yet we stand tall and strong. Wherever we may be, whatever our tafkid may be, we proudly proclaim that our portion is with the Torah and those who dedicate their lives to learning it.

We then can tap in to those special moments when we look around and are filled with pride, thanking Hashem for our special portion. Shehivdilanu min hato’im v’nasan lanu Toras emes.

Devoiry was her husband’s biggest supporter, both when he was in kollel and when he moved on with the guidance of da’as Torah. She watched with pride how his standards never changed, but nothing prepared her for the moment when her 17-year-old daughter nonchalantly mentioned that some of her friends went on a certain trip, but as a daughter of a ben Torah, she didn’t feel it was appropriate for her to go.


Chaim left his office for the day with a sigh of relief. He felt so uncomfortable in an environment that chased money and dreams that didn’t exist. His night seder chaburah was hosting a Chanukah mesibah that night, and he was looking forward to it.

One of the yungerleit rose to speak, and while expounding on the life of Yavan he began, “Although we’re zocheh to live a life so full of meaning, and we can’t begin to understand the need for anything else…” Hearing the simple sincerity with which he said it and seeing the nods around the room of those who felt the same, Chaim knew he would never give this up.

As Yom Tov approaches, we take stock and think of those who hold the banner high, who lead the charge and help us keep our dreams alive. We think of those who are on the front lines day and night, our friends and chavrusas, and we do our part to ensure that they have what’s needed for a befitting Yom Tov.

Kupas Yom Tov is not an organization. It was founded by a group of yungerleit looking out for their friends and chavrusas, but it expanded very quickly as so many others joined. So many who are not in yeshivah reached out with the battle cry once again of “V’sein chelkeinu imahem.”