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Prepare for Retirement

02/08/2019 09:52:20 AM


What do you think about when you hear the question, "Are you preparing for your retirement?" We are conditioned to think about this question in terms of money. I had the opportunity last week to visit a member of our congregation who was recovering from surgery. He told me that he was planning to retire, soon. He spoke about seeking more of the spiritual, as he gave up some of his physical pursuits.

In this week's parsha, we read about the materials collected for the mishkan's construction. The act of giving fills our souls with meaning - it too is a form of construction; we build our spiritual selves. Winston Churchill famously said, "We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give."  Giving isn't only about what it does for others; it is also about what it does for us. Charity helps us rise above our self-absorption and teaches us to appreciate the feelings and emotions of others.

To prepare for retirement, we must put away resources in our spiritual "bank account." We develop ourselves with the mitzvot that we do and with the Torah that we study (as I mentioned in my drasha last week). Our later years invite us to look more deeply at meaning and purpose within our lives. This is the time to open to the wonder and mystery of life. This requires preparation; it does not happen by itself. So I ask, "Are you preparing for retirement?" 

Mon, 30 November 2020 14 Kislev 5781