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|Rambam - Sefer HaMitzvos
As Divided for The Daily Learning Schedule
Positive Mitzvot 10, 5
Positive Mitzvah 10: Reciting the "Shema"
Deuteronomy 6:7 "And you shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you travel on the road, and when you lie down and when you rise up"
HaShem commanded us to recite the Shema twice every day, in the morning and the evening.
When our Sages arranged the content of the Siddur, they included the Shema in the morning and evening prayers.
The Hebrew word Shema - gives us a hint about our three daily prayers.
The first letter Shin stands for Shacharit - the morning prayers.
The second letter Mem stands for Minchah -, the afternoon prayers.
The third letter Ayin stands for Arvit (Maariv) - the evening prayers.
Positive Mitzvah 5: Worshiping G-d - "Prayer"
Exodus 23:25 "And you shall serve the L-rd, your G-d"
Imagine a magnificent palace with servants always ready to serve the king. Some stand by his throne, others bring him food, and, still others, tailor his velvet robes.
This service is fit for a king.
HaShem is the King of all kings! He does not ask us to perform these types of service, but rather instructs us to serve Him through Prayer Tefillah.
As subjects of our King, we express our dedication and loyalty by offering our praise and making our requests through prayer.
G-d did not give you light that you may hold it up in the middle of the day. When you are given light it is in order to accomplish something, to do something difficult and novel. Go take your light and transform the darkness that it may also shine!
From: Bringing Heaven Down to Earth by Tzvi Freeman - email@example.com