Shavuah tov! Today after davening and eating and sleeping and davening and eating and, wait, eating some more, I was discussing with someone the importance of picking up on the messages that Hashem sends us (little/big loving hugs, if you will) and also of smiling through the tough times. Then we had a whole discussion about walking the walk.
I’ve met people who preach love and acceptance and understanding and who are, pardon me, but – the biggest jerks. They humiliate people in public while talking about building them up. Hypocrisy is very frustrating (although, like everyone else, I’m sure I’ve had my guilty moments). As adults, we have to put our money where our mouths are, and DO IT. Easier said than done, of course, but what else are we here for?
As I was explaining this all to some people, at the same time, I’ve been having my own little difficulties as of late, adjusting to new life and so forth. Now, of course, to ME they seem huge and insurmountable. But last night I had a chat with myself, and the royal we decided that it’s time to learn what Hashem is trying to teach me in this situation, and do what He wants from me, and that either the outcome will be as I want it, or it won’t, but either way I have to smile and be happy because this is clearly how Hashem wants it to be. If I do my part as He wishes, however it is, it’s His will and that’s the end (and I have enough life experience to know that He does a WAY better job of running the world than I ever would.) There goes my intellect. But how is this all going to enter my heart?
One of the people I was speaking with asked me about difficult times I’ve had in the past, and said that she felt bad for me, and she was sorry I had to go through it. And there I was, thinking – “I’m not! All that stuff helped to make me to shape me into a person I could respect and admire! Baruch Hashem! At the time, it was hell to go through, but now that it’s over, I wouldn’t trade those experiences for ANYTHING.” So really I’m sure that all my “big insurmountable problems” (boo hoo for me, right?) are of the same category and, at the very least, after 120 years, this will be one of the best times of my life. YAY!
At seudat shlishit (I hear that’s incorrect hebrew, but what can I say, I’m still an igorant American) someone spoke about Rebbe Nachman’s story of the sophisticate and the simpleton…she gave a synopsis that is longer than I have time to write, but you can read the full version that I found on the internet with google’s help here. What I took from the story on this particular occasion is that it’s important to be happy with whatever we’ve got, because that defines the life that we live, and also that Hashem can change things for us for the better in the blink of an eye. It’s good to have these moments of affirmation.
This evening I went to a shiur given by Rabbi Orlofsky. He spoke about a lot of things, but one of the topics he got into was how Avraham avinu was thinking about the terrible tragedy of galut, and he would have chosen gehenom for the Jewish nation OVER galut. Hashem told him that it was better for us to be in Galut. R. Oflofsky then went on to explain that Dovid Hamelech was stopped from building the Beit Hamikdash(BH) because that would have made it eternal and there would come a time when Hashem would have to destroy the BH or the Jewish people, and better to destroy the BH than us. Similarly, when we don’t live up to par, we can at least blame galut, and our lacking life circumstances. If we were to have reached the messianic era without being up to par, we would have no one to blame but our sorry selves, and that would STINK. So at least we get to slink away with our dignity somewhat intact. And when we are ready to do it right, and will accept no more excuses, THAT is when we will be able to have Moshiach, and THAT is when the messianic era will be good for us.
See how kind Hashem is? So it’s time to put my money where my mouth is, grow in abundance, just do it, and make myself into a person that is worthy of miracles.
IY”H we should all merit to see the hashgacha pratis in our lives on a daily basis, to learn all the lessons that we need to learn in the least painful way possible, and to merit the ultimate redemption soon and bask in the glory of our job’s well done!