What does G-d have in store for me next? This question must plague the mind of most of us from time to time, and it was likely the question on the mind of our Patriarch, Abraham. After moving with his family and his father to the land of Charan, Abraham is told to leave once again. G-d promises him a great future of blessing, fame, and fortune, but He leaves out one detail — the destination of his journey. He simply tells Abraham to go “to the land I will show you (Genesis 12:1).” Why not tell him where he is headed?
This suggests, writes Rabbi Leib Chasman zt”l (1869-1935), that if Abraham would be told his destination, he would not fully grasp its importance and meaning. Informing him of the location would understate the goal. His journey from Charan was one of the first steps of the formation of the Jewish people, the revelation at Sinai, and their ultimate settlement in the land of Israel. The exact coordinates of the place would only diminish the significance of his mission.
Often in life we’re faced with difficulties, and at those times we wish we knew what lay on the other side of the hill. In desperation we wonder, “Why doesn’t G-d just tell us where it’s all headed, and take the edge off of this challenge?” He won’t tell us. If we were told what we were about to accomplish, what success looks like, and what blessings were in store for us, we would never understand what they all meant.
We tend to be very short-sighted, and assume that things could not get better for us than they currently are. The words said to Abraham are the prophecy from G-d that we all seek. We are headed towards “the land that I will show you.” Only after we see and experience the success and blessing can we begin to understand the essence of what it is.