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Parashat Teruma-Zachor – Take Sam’s Call


Josh is looking to open a new law office. He calls Sam, the chairman of the biggest firm in town, and asks him for a tip.

“To everyone who calls, tell them you aren’t available to see them in the next three months. Watch and see how your practice will grow.”

Sure enough within a year, his office had become the go to place in town.

A short while later, Sam had some extra clients he wouldn’t be able to serve and decided to give them to Josh. “Let me give him a nice surprise”, thought Sam. Calling Josh, he received the reply: “Sorry, Josh is unavailable, call back in 6 months”.

“No..”, came the response, “please go tell Josh, that this is Sam. I am the one who told him about this strategy. I actually want to give him some of our workload…”

Running a business demands a hands on approach. Every business needs a strategy. Every industry has its needs that have to be met.

There are rules to the game of commerce. There are accepted and expected outcomes relative to our input. If we work less than our competition we will fall behind. If we close early on Friday, if we don’t open on Jewish holidays, we will fall behind!  

If a retail entity were to close on weekends it would seem like they are putting a wrench into the wheels of success. Yet, we are told not to work on Shabbat! How does this make sense?

How are we supposed to run a retail business and not follow the rules of business? 

These rules that we’re disregarding aren’t rules in the regular sense of the word. They are strategies. Our strategies to maximize our success. But the rules, the rules that cause and determine our success, those are dictated by the creator of the game. Those are the rules we are keeping! If the creator of the game told us not to play on Saturday, obviously he isn’t looking to make us lose. If Sam is calling, answer the phone. That might be your biggest bet for success!

You see, keeping Shabbat is part of our success. We are inviting a crucial partner into our business. The chairman of all banks. The only one who controls all markets. What is a better investment than that?

Sure. It doesn’t fit in with the strategies that most retail operations employ. But, a strategy is just a strategy. Inviting the creator is inviting success itself through the door. It’s impossible that the creator would tell us something that would sink the ship.

Obviously, if Sam calls we answer the phone. When Hashem says close…we take the call, In these difficult times, let’s invest in Shabat insurance. It’s free. 

Wishing you and your family a Shabat Shalom,

Rabbi Mendy