Hey You!

M’nucha Bialik, International Shidduch Coach

Hey you! Yeah, you! Come here.  I want to show you something.  Good.  Now stand still, close your eyes, and think, “Ein od milvado — There is nothing but Hashem.”  Exactly!

Now, look down.  Careful!  You don’t want to fall!  Yup.  You’ve  guessed it: we’re on top of a cloud.  Isn’t it beautiful?  This  is what I see every day.  This is Hashem’s world.  And it is truly awesome!

Today you were chosen to come up here with me, and I want to show you some  amazing things.  First of all, do you see those birds?  How many different species do you think there  are?  Listen!  Look! They all sound different.  They all soar in the sky differently and each gets  its  food in its  own unique way.

Just sit here quietly for a moment and let your eyes roam.  See the animals, the people, the mountains, the rivers, the valleys.  all of it is beautiful.  All of it is… perfect!

From up here, you can see that the whole system is flawless.  Everything is just right.  From this  vantage point, you can see how  smoothly  it all comes together.  And if you look carefully, you can  see your place in the whole scheme of things.  You see that space over there?  That’s your place in the  world.  It belongs only to you, and only you can fill it.  The world isn’t complete without you, your  special abilities, and your unique gifts.

Now, I know that you are interested in shidduchim.  So let me show you something.  You see that young lady?  She is twenty-three.  She couldn’t go out with that young man over there – her bashert – when she first started dating, as the young man was only eighteen years old at the time.  He is twenty-two years old now.  When she began dating, both of them still needed to work on a few of their middos, and the guy wasn’t anywhere near ready to start going out yet.  Now, when the shadchan suggested this shidduch, they were both emotionally and spiritually ready for each other and happily agreed to meet.

Now look over there.  Do you see that young man, that’s right, the one with the glasses and the  white  shirt?  Well, he’s twenty-seven.  He’s seriously dating that sweet young woman way over  there, who is thirty-one.  It would never have worked out earlier because  they live miles away from each other and each one was busy getting their degrees, working, and living their lives.  Neither  would have had the money, the time, or the emotional resources to travel and date  each other  properly before this.

Do  you see that young gentleman over there?  He’s twenty-nine and is going out with his bashert.  When  he started dating at  twenty-two, his  bashert was still in high school and was only fourteen years  old.  Now, seven years  later, his kallah is twenty-one and they are engaged.

The young lady right below us – yes, that one right there – is thirty-two years old and has just begun to date her bashert.  He has recently grown strong enough in his Yiddeshkeit (his family is not yet religious) to be an appropriate shidduch for this terrific young lady.

And that young woman didn’t marry until she was in her mid-thirties, as her  husband was married to someone else and they’d each been looking for something  completely different when they were in their early twenties.

That lady with the seven children didn’t get married until she  was twenty-nine.  During much of the time she was dating, her husband-to-be was debilitated by a chronic illness and unable to involve himself in shidduchim.  His difficult situation led him to reassess his life goals.  Her goals had also changed during her extended time in the world of dating.  By the time he recovered from his illness, they were perfectly in sync.

Down below, there is much that doesn’t make sense.  Up here, however, everything fits together beautifully.  It all makes perfect sense!

What did you say?  Hmmm… That’s a good question.  You want to know why you have to suffer so much now.  What’s the point of it all?

You’re looking at me in puzzlement, but let me reassure you:  there is a point to it all.  It is not mere happenstance that your bashert wasn’t ready for you when you were nineteen years old, or even when you were twenty-four or thirty-four or however young you are.

Did you ever hear the story about the man who heard a daily bas kol telling him to lift an enormous rock?  (I’ve repeated this terrific story of Rabbi Wallerstein z”l numerous times.)  Every day this man would try.  He would strain and struggle, but of course he couldn’t lift the rock; it was impossible.  One day, the Satan himself came down from the heavens and mocked this man for his efforts.  He told the man that up in Shamayim, everyone was laughing at him for attempting to do the impossible.   But the  next day, the man heard the same bas kol,and he again tried to lift the rock.

This continued day after day until one day, the man heard a woman screaming nearby.  Her son was stuck under a truck.  The man ran to help and effortlessly lifted the truck, saving the little boy’s life.

Now the man understood why he had repeatedly been told to try to lift the rock.  The point was not to actually lift the rock.  The purpose of the exercise was to build his muscles so that when the moment came, he could save that little boy’s life!

The point of all your current struggling and straining is not for the purpose of finding your bashert.  Hashem can make that happen instantaneously!  The point is to educate you.  It’s to teach you lessons about life.  It’s to teach you lessons about yourself.  It’s to give you the opportunity to learn about tefillah, bitachon, and emunah.  The struggling and the straining develop your spiritual muscles.  They teach you who you are and what you are capable of.  

By getting up every day, by staying strong in your emunah, by continuing the struggle and not giving up, you are developing yourself in order to one day be able to…  Well, that’s for you to find out.

In the meantime, rest assured that your struggles are not for naught.  In fact, the struggle is actually the most important thing that you need right  now.  So keep on building those all-important spiritual muscles!

Up here, all is beautiful and peaceful.  It is easy to understand everything that has happened in the past and that is happening now.  But when you return to “Real Life,” you will be going back to a world where things often appear to be random and irrational.   Don’t forget what you’ve glimpsed up here.  Stay strong and keep growing.

Remember  that Hashem knows exactly what He is doing when He places you where you are.  Use your strengths to improve yourself, and seek out your weaknesses in order to better yourself.  And keep on struggling – because that is what’s building you!

Have a great shabbos!