The Torah states:
“Jacob spoke up and said to Laban, ‘What is my transgression? What is my sin that you have (so) hotly pursued me?’ “(Gen. 31:36)
When Rachel left, she stole her father’s idols and concealed them. Laban pursued Jacob and angrily demanded, “Why did you steal my gods?” (Gen. 31:30)
One of the Torah commentaries said that Jacob’s statement, in addition to being a complaint against Laban, was also a self-reprimand by Jacob. In essence Jacob was saying, “Here Laban forms a search group to pursue me for seven days in order to retrieve his worthless idols. And am I, knowing the true God, exerting as much effort to come close to Him?”
How much we value something is indicated by how much effort we are willing to exert to acquire or retain it. A recovering drug addict may not attend a recovery group because he doesn’t have a car. However, if he wanted to buy cocaine he’d walk miles even in icy weather to get his drug!
When Jacob saw the effort that Laban exerted to retrieve his idols, he took himself to task. Seeing the effort that some people put forth for things of questionable importance, we should do a soul- searching on how much effort we are ready to expend for clarifying our beliefs and observing the mitzvos.