Royalty in this world is a model of Hashem’s Kingship in the heavens. Monarchy has its own rules, and each one of them is structured to bring the greatest honor to the king. Through understanding the protocol of royalty in this world we can gain a better grasp of Hashem’s Kingship. When servants take care of their own needs before they see to those of the king, they are making a statement that they take precedence over the king. Therefore, one of the rules of the palace is that servants shall not eat before the king has dined. In this light the Zohar writes that a person may not take care of his own needs until he has given Hashem His sustenance, which is tefillah (Zohar Pinchas 241b according to the commentary of the Or Yakar).
We are often faced with numerous temptations before tefillah. Chazal, who were the masters of royal protocol, established the halachos which classify what is considered a slight to Hashem’s honor when performed before tefillah. So, for starters, as soon as we wake up in the morning our mind should be focused on tefillah to Hashem, so that we can see to the needs of our King before we take care of ours.
Before seeing to our personal ones.
Text Copyright © 2013 by Rabbi Daniel Travis and Torah.org