There is a custom that has become increasingly wide-spread, due to the nature of what it is supposed to do for us. That is to recite today, Tuesday, Parshas HaMann, the verses that relay the story of the Manna raining down from Heavens. This is supposed to be an aid in bringing down the blessings of abundant Parnassah [livelihood].
Actually, in the Talmud it states that saying this every day is advisable to be helped with earning our daily bread. The Levush explains that just as the Manna came in quantities exactly suited for the day, we are asking for the needs of our day-to-day existence.
So today, many people will be whipping out their siddurim and concentrating really hard on saying Parshas HaMann, hoping they will get enough of a bonanza to redo their house, buy their Mercedes van and go on that family vacation.
Yet, you begin to read…two verses in, and the tune changes. For the Parshas HaMann recounts how G-d said that providence would rain down from the heavens, “Lma’an anasenoo” in order to test us, “Ha’yaylaych B’Torasee Oh Loh” whether or not we will go in the ways of G-d’s Torah.
Was a time when our grandparents or great-grandparents knew the pangs of hunger and of want. They prayed and said, “G-d, if only you would give us a place and time where there would be a plethora of foods to feed our children, how much more would we serve you.” Then they came to the “Goldene Medina” to the great land of opportunity. Out went their Tefillin and their Torah as they built their McMansions and chased the American dream.
By all means, say the Parshas HaMann today. Yet realize you are being asked to show your loyalty to G-d with Parnassah. What will you do with the increased money He will send your way? Is it for your designer duds…or to help the Kollelim, Yeshivos and the widows and orphans? Is it for your aged steak or to stock the local Bikur Cholim room with food?
The verses also talk about gathering “dvar yom b’yomo” each day’s need for each day. Can we, as we say this, commit to learning that lesson too – be sure and secure in G-d’s munificence that we don’t give ourselves ulcers over next year’s issues. Do the right thing with our money today, and know that tomorrow will be taken care of as well?
It is good that at least once a year we say these verses about the Manna, not only to give us the opportunity to beg for money, but also as a chance to realign ourselves with Torah values about that money.
Parshas Haman can be found in most Siddurim after the Shacharis prayers. If you want to access it in Hebrew online, here it is: http://www.tefillos.com/parshas_hamon.asp
Here is the translated version from Artscroll http://artscroll.files.wordpress.com/2009/01/the-chapter-of-manna.pdf