This week’s Parsha, Parsha Lech-Lech, derives its title from the famous command, “לֶךְ־לְךָ֛ מֵאַרְצְךָ֥ וּמִמּֽוֹלַדְתְּךָ֖ וּמִבֵּ֣ית אָבִ֑יךָ אֶל־הָאָ֖רֶץ אֲשֶׁ֥ר אַרְאֶֽךָּ”. Hashem commands Avram to flee from his home and follow His directions, which he does so without hesitation. Avram, his wife, Sarai, and his nephew, Lot, follow this journey to the land of Canaan. Sarai was very generous just like Avram. In fact, she was considered a princess in the eyes of Hashem, which is why later in the parshah her name was changed to Sarah, meaning princess.
Her generosity is demonstrated through her devotion to having children. Sarai, unfortunately, struggled with fertility. Out of frustration and exhaustion, she decided to allow Avram to have children with her maid, Hagar. Sarai tells her husband “הִנֵּה־נָ֞א עֲצָרַ֤נִי יְהֹוָה֙ מִלֶּ֔דֶת בֹּא־נָא֙ אֶל־שִׁפְחָתִ֔י אוּלַ֥י אִבָּנֶ֖ה מִמֶּ֑נָּה”. In her request for Avram to take Hagar as a wife, she uses the word “אִבָּנֶ֖ה”, referring to a son. The root of this word is ב,נ,ה which means to build. Sarai is trying to tell Avram that this son, Ishmael, may build her up too. Because of this, Hashem granted her a child at the age of ninety.
Sarai teaches us that we must be selfless. Hashem’s response of rewarding her with a child, shows us that there is a bigger plan. We should put our feelings aside to allow others to be happy. Whenever we are struggling, we must remember the actions of Sarai and be selfless.
By: Riley Spitz (9th)