In this week’s parsha we talk about the importance of living up to our potential.

A few years ago, Israel faced a water crisis. On the verge of hitting the Kinneret’s red line–which would indicate an emergency situation–the Knesset convened for a quick solution to counteract the drought. Their decision? To simply lower the red line.

While it may have been a government decision, one can’t deny the irony here. What’s more, we often make similar moves in our own lives: how frequently do we create “red lines” for ourselves, and then–failing to meet up to the standards we’ve set–simply lower those lines? It’s not so bad–we tell ourselves–why, it could be worse.

At Rosh Hashanah, let’s create lines that mirror our expectations, and make a firm decision not to lower them this year.

There is a poignant statement of Rabbi Zushe of Anipol which I think truly brings this concept home.

Said Reb Zushe: “When I come to stand before the heavenly court, I do not fear the question: ‘Why weren’t you Moses?’ I was not equipped to be Moses. But I tremble for the day that it will be demanded of me: ‘Why weren’t you Zushe?’”

Indeed, let’s recognize our strengths and set the bar accordingly this year; let’s remain staunch and live up to our true potential!

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