My question is more hashkaphic, maybe you can help anyway. I have heard that depending on how you look at a given situation you can turn it into a mitzvah. If I get a job as a paralegal how can I turn my job into a mitzvah that I will be getting schar for and not just as time spent away from study and prayer. I am not married and don’t have children, so I can’t say I am doing it to support a family.

Answer:

The Gemara states that earning one’s own living is a great virtue, and “one who derives benefit from the labor of his palms is greater than a yerei shamayim.” Earning one’s own income is a fundamental tenet of living a Jewish life, for the will of G-d is that people should be ‘independent,’ and enjoy the fruit of their own labors. This is a fundamental concept for spiritual matters–we must earn our keep by virtue of our free will, and Hashem does not wish to give us free gifts–but it is true even in the physical world.

Therefore, even if you find nothing positive in your work other than earning an income, there is certainly something positive, and a ‘mitzvah,’ in this alone.

Beyond this, you can certainly find positive aspects to your job, such as working honestly, creating a kiddush Hashem, helping and being kind to others, controlling temptations, being satisfied with your lot, and so on.

As you rightly note, every situation can be seen from different angles. Try to make the moments count!

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