Listening to some religious talk my husband was watching – something from a chabad rabbi, I believe. An interesting question posed in this talk (asked of someone who was frum – meaning observant; careful in the observing of a law, custom, religious ritual, or the like). “What were you before you were frum?” Answer: I was jewish.
Interestingly, when asked of a Christian (and I am by no means knocking Christians), the answer is “well…nothing”. The thing about being jewish, is that there is nothing you do or don’t do about being jewish. You simply are. It’s really kind of that simple. Being religious or observant or frum (or not being so) changes nothing of whether or not one is Jewish. It’s not something you can walk away from or sin yourself out of.
Simcha B’taharasa. Roughly translated “joy in its purity”. This is what our rabbi spoke of during Friday night services.
Even greater than joy because things are going right, greater than that of doing a mitzvah…. Joy Because – Because being the reason for the joy, itself. It is the highest most purest form of joy. Not joy because your alive or joy because you have food to eat or shelter… Just JOY.
How many can truly say they’ve achieved that pure of a level of joy?!? Sure we can come up with reasons – Joy because of this or that… But how many can end the sentence not with Joy because…., but Joy Because!!
While at a Chabad Lag BaOmer event this evening, it started to rain. The situation was dealt with in the usual good naturedness (and good spirits) in which Chabad deals with such situations…..
And then we were rewarded with a reminder of God’s Promise:
“And it shall come to pass when I bring a cloud over the earth that the bow shall be seen in the cloud and I will remember my covenant, which is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh; And the waters shall no more become a flood to destroy all flesh.” Genesis 8:14-15
This is a reblog of an old post I wrote last year on my personal site ~ The Wife
Today I came across something I had not known before. Actually, that’s not too surprising. Seems like there’s always something new to learn something not previously heard of or known.
Flipping to the page in question, I read that it is Jewish tradition to read a verse from scripture That either symbolizes a person’s name or one that begins with the first letter and ends with the last letter of a person’s name before reading the Shemoni Esrei or Amidah (also called “The Standing Prayer”).
Intrigued, I decided to use the latter method and read further….
Not knowing my Bible, I decided to get same said and look up proverbs 31:17….
Here’s what it said:
“She girds herself with strength, And strengthens her arms”
All I can say is WOW!!!
I often feel like everything that needs to get done is somehow put on my plate. Like I’m not getting any help and am always being called upon for help with something. Sometimes I just want to disappear for a while and say “you guys figure out how to get by with out me around”. I’m overwhelmed and emotionally/mentally exhausted. I want to crawl into a cave or hole somewhere and cry “Uncle”….. And yet physically (even emotionally and mentally) I manage to keep going. Guess that scripture verse explains it. Pretty profound (when you stop and think about it) that that would be my verse.
Okay, I know I’m not alone in this feeling, I’m sure many of you out there have that same feeling….. It is difficult and even stressful sometimes when you have a disabled husband who constantly need your help to get things done.
Thinking this morning about how we as a society are quick to judge others. Looking at their outer appearances more than their inner heart. People are so quick to judge others not by their inner “fruits”, but how they look on the outside. Looking at a person who is dressed shabbily or who drinks a little too much. A person who acts rough around the edges in public….. These people are deemed unworthy, sinful, etc…. People only look on the outside and see the the black carbon on the outside, not the diamond on the inside. While, on the other hand those who are dressed perfectly and act perfectly in public are seen as being the good-ones. It doesn’t matter that those same people may very well be the ones who will turn away from you during your greatest time of need, the ones who may even strike against you and turn against you. In addition it seems that if you do dress as a G-dly person people expect perfection from you. Mistakes, oversights, “freudian slips”, etc just aren’t acceptable. “If your gonna dress perfect, you must act perfect at all times – no exceptions.
We are also quick to judge others cause they don’t believe the same way we do. The mentality seems to be that “If you don’t believe my way, then you are wrong and don’t know what your talking about”. The “I’m the only one who is right” idea. Some day G-d is going to come down to earth and tell everyone (all these people who are thinking their way is the right way and is the only right way) how wrong and off the mark they really were. But anywhooo…..
There are so many ways in which we judge. Looking at the rough outer appearances and actions of a person and not seeing the diamond of the persons inner heart. Deciding that a person with a disfigurement or an impediment must be retarded or stupid when in fact that person might actually be a genius. Judging a person who might learn differently as being wrong and not worth our time.
Why do people have to judge so bitterly, so harshly. I know the obvious answer…. Because we are humans and G-d gave us free will – and their will always be mean people out their. Still it is sad that people are like that — many the same people who claim to be people of G-d, claim to be believers, to have a faith of some sort, etc.
God Bless the soldiers, the teachers, the firefighters, the police officers, the poor, the lonely, the downtrodden, those who have made a difference in the lives of others, those who think they don’t matter, those that have lost loved ones, those who have stood by the bedside of the dying, the weak, the poor, the hungry, the sick, the victims of crimes of any sort, the homeless, those who have lost unborn children, those with ailments & diseases with no known cures, Those who struggle to find cures, those who reach out to others to make a difference in their lives, and to anyone else whom I’ve forgotten………