Thursday, August 11

Hashgochoh Protis XIV - השגחה פרטית

A story that happened very recently, which I just heard in the office from someone who heard it from a relative of the child’s father:
A Jewish family was making their way to the holy land. It was midnight, the night of Friday Erev Shabbos and they were flying from the States to Eretz.  Halfway through the flight, a one-year-old baby developed a serious stomach infection.  

The stewardess called out asking whether there’s a doctor on board and a young podiatrist volunteered to attend to the baby.  
After a thorough inspection, the doctor explained that although the condition isn’t life-threatening, he wouldn’t advise chancing it on such a long journey and he asked if it would be possible to land at the nearest airport.  
After a couple of minutes an announcement was heard: “due to an emergency sickness, we will have to land in Coimbra, Portugal to allow for medical attention, after which we’ll continue on our way”.  
As the plane was making its descent, sharp-eyed passengers spotted an ambulance waiting near the runway.  Soon the doors opened and the medical team boarded. 
As they were preparing to take the child and its parents to the hospital, another passenger complained of chest pains, which soon turned out as a cardiac arrest.  The medical team dropped the baby and rushed over to the elderly Yid, who was taken to hospital for life-saving treatment.  
Now they were waiting for another ambulance, all passengers – or at least those who believe in Hashgochoh Protis – realised what a Neys they just witnessed: had the baby not developed an acute condition, which was not life-threatening – this heart patient wouldn’t have made it.  
The baby made a full recovery and once Shabbos was over the family continued on their way to Eretz Yisroel. 
May we all be spared such situations and let us open our eyes to see Hashgochoh Protis in all situations, not just the dramatic ones.

Comment by S.Z.F:
Tremendous story! Thanks for sharing it - As I have some others lined up this one will be published at a later date B.n., Gut Chodesh

Thursday, August 4

Dos Pintele Yid

You will probably realise who I am once you’ve read a few more lines
But for some reason, I don’t want to write my name on this page of rhymes
We have a relationship in which openness and trust
Are of absolute importance and a very big must
And that is why after an insightful lesson at school
Where we analysed yet another poem that was so very cool
I realised that poems say a lot in little space
And decided I would try it out rather than talk face to face
You see, I’m feeling so confused because of our little chat
And feel like hiding my face forever – never thought I’d ever feel like that
I want to try to understand what you are going through
But am finding it so hard myself – with issues not a few
The very next few lines, revealing they may be
Yet I trust that you won’t share them with anybody
For here the trust is both ways – you don’t say nor do I
Any words said between us besides for ‘hi’ and ‘bye’
And after you’ve read this letter all the way to the end
You can make the decision whether to think or to pretend
That nothing is the matter and things are fine all the way
Since perhaps you are hiding your very own face –
Don’t worry: you may hate me for what I say
Are you feeling - like I am
That the struggle’s way too hard?
That the outside (or not so outside) world beckons
It's right in my backyard?
Are you feeling like I am
That it’s really not worth the fight –
Who cares about me anyway –
Who cares whether my actions are wrong or right?
Are you feeling like I am
That the logic and emotions don’t meet
And that the Ruchniyus is fighting
For its place there on the street?
Are you feeling like I am
That the tanker’s running low
And there’s no more fuel in there
-For inspiration where do I go?
Are you feeling like I am
That the way that’s good and true
Is just much too boring
For a fun-loving you?
Am I feeling like you are
Or is my imagination wild
Am I the one that’s dreaming
While you’re just being mild?
Do you wish I’d just get off your back
And say goodbye to you
Or do you realise that I’m spilling it all out
Because of my Ahavah towards you?
And just in case you have forgotten
What I said earlier on
Don’t worry if you share too much about me
With anyone
Since I’ve already realised that I can’t trust anyone anymore
So I’ll just give up trying and just spill my very heart’s contents on the floor
Whatever I am writing is coming straight from my inner core
Then through my brain and fingers, then to your Neshama’s open door
And if you go behind my back and laugh at all you’ve read
I don’t care since what’s the difference?
– Something inside me’s already dead
Know that I do understand the struggle deep inside
Know that Hashem knows even more than you – it’s He that did decide
That this challenge will befall you before you realise it is one
And he loves you every moment still like a cherished son...
...And you are a cherished daughter of the One Who created man
And placed tests on this world for those whom He knows can
Overcome and undertake things they find so hard
And that is why I learn from you and the things you teach I guard
Who cares what the world thinks of what you’re doing or have done
If you know that really in this world there Is only One?
The Bashefer knows your every struggle - every emotion you contain
And even knows the feelings you don’t allow into your brain
Hashem is our father in this world that’s so insane
Where wrong is so blurred with right and growth is just a pain
Whether or not we understand the Rabbonim and the things they expect
Where do my priorities lay – my Yiras Shamayim do I protect?
Do I want to stay with my belief that it is only Yidishkeit
To which I should hang on to with my very strength and blood and might
Or do I want to be swayed by my worse (not bad – a Yiddish child has no bad inside) side
Which tells me it is easier to just be pulled along the tide?
Who cares about the Next World – it’s so so very far off–
If in this world I’m enjoying – things otherwise are tough
And why are others allowed
Things I’m not allowed to do
And nothing happens to their name
That’s not fair – thank you!
How do I say goodbye to the stuff and people I love
If I know they are not good for me but fit me like a glove?
Or perhaps they’ve got me around their finger
With me being the glove and them the hand
Taking me into the freezing temperatures of forbidden land?
And anyway, who says what I’m doing is as bad as they mention?
So what if I talk differently and look places that draw my attention?
Who cares if my Neshama’s slowly wrapped around with layers of the fat
That the outside offers – should I lose some weight of that?
I don’t care that we’re here for a purpose –
To be Mekadeish the Eibershter’s name
Who cares why I was born – I didn’t choose to play this game
Why should I work on myself when in fact I’m not one but two
With both sides inside me battling –
What am I supposed to do?
Am I the girl who is always standing up for what is right
Or the one that’s falling for the things that seem glittering and bright?
Am I the girl who really has the strength deep inside
But is hiding it with layers of acting, confidence and pride?
Am I the girl who scorns the Torah and its sacred ways
Or the one that’s filling thoughts of closeness to Hashem in all her days
Just one more thing – let me tell you – whatever you decide
You’ll always have someone behind you or even at your side
Who still believes you want to be good and are good all the time
Even in those seconds where you’re feeling like a crime
Just know that there are many pairs of eyes looking your way
And whatever direction you choose to take will be noticed straight away
And even if you now don’t see how anything affects,
In the Next World – the one that’s forever - Hashem selects
And judges not by how high on the ladder your Neshamah stands
But on how much your muscles worked whilst grasping with both your hands
That rung so very tightly so that whichever way the winds do blow
You stay and don’t lose footing – in this way you do grow
Before I forget to mention it, let me come and relate
No matter how long it’s been, it never is too late
Hashem is waiting, yearning for your return
For inside every Jew, the Pintele Yid continues to burn
You know who