By Rav Y. Reuven Rubin
We have all been sharing challenging times of late. Hopefully, by the time this reaches you the lockdown will have eased a bit and perhaps our shuls will have been reopened to a safe extent. Still, we must all understand that this has not been for naught, a message sent without being understood is truly a huge loss.
During these weeks we have all had moments of upset, frayed nerves scraping at our souls, yet all this is from the Eibishter, and we must use our every fiber to grasp the moment and use it in bringing ourselves closer to Hashem.
“Wait a minute Rabbi, I’m no superstar, I’m just a Baal habos who is trying to push myself forward whilst keeping up with some sort of standard in my Yiddishkiet.”
We often put ourselves down, a trick the yetzer horah has perfected over the millennium of practice. Allow me to clue you all in, we are all huge stars! After all it is our generation that Hashem felt secure enough with to visit upon us this difficult tikun. If we wouldn’t have the wherewithal, then we wouldn’t have been tasked to persevere in these difficult times. Every generation has its own unique trial and as each in its turn rises above their challenge they add to the tikun that the entire world needs.
Post Churban Yiddishkiet has been blessed with open miracles. As a youngster born in the year the war ended, I never dreamt that the Torah community I was being brought up in would ever be anything more than a quant corner of the Jewish scene tucked away and hidden from the mainstream. Yet, Torah leadership gave us all such vibrant chizuk, survivors became strong and able. I recall many of those bold first steps were being made, and all stood in wonder as with the sheer audacity of belief, the possible made its debut and pushed everything aside. Those who suffered nightmares woke up dreamers, creating the greatest Mosdos in the history of our long Golus.
Tzaddikim who had been hounded out of their homes in “der Hiem” created new Hiems, and then would return to those ancient places with thousands of fresh-faced scholars, to prove to the world that Am Yisroel Chai!
We sit astounded at what this recent pandemic has wrought, but we should have no doubts, no fears. We will build even more, and our young will create ever stronger links in the chain of klall Yisroel. We never sought this challenge, Hashem did that for us, however, please hear well what I say, our neshomahs were created at the moment of creation for just this moment. This is our tikun, and we will glorify Hashem’s name in it. Hashem has now given us a clear canvas, one awaiting our creativity in spiritual clarity.
Be heroes yiddisher kinder, allow yourselves a moment of pride. Then, well then hold your pain and allow it to find strength within your hearts. Our tears are holy, as are the peels of laughter from our young. If we stand solid, then we will triumph. Our Mosdos will open with the truth of Torah, and shuls and Shtieblech will once more ring with the tfilahs created through brotherhood. Hashem’s name will be sanctified by our actions, and hopefully, these moments will bring the total Redemption we all pray for. May we see this is good health, open hearts and joyful song. Amen!