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  • Writer's pictureReuven

Hit by the flood

What the Rav said:

A person wants to go into his Succah, and it starts to rain. Suddenly, a flood hits him, he’s soaked from head to toe.

He needs to say, ‘Master of the World, thank you.’

The ‘Mei Shiloach’ explains, when it rains, a Jew leaves the Succah with humility. He accepts the judgement with love.

They ‘throw a jug of water in his face’ and he says, ‘I’m not fitting to fulfil the mitzvah of Succah. I’m not fitting to be in the camp of Israel. I’m not fitting to be a Jew at all!’

Like the Kohanim, when they say to a Kohen, you’ve got a blemish you can’t serve in the Temple. You’ve got some scratch, some blister, you can’t serve in the Temple.

Those who souls are rooted in the souls of Israel, when they tell them they need to be outside the camp, they accept it with love. They leave with humility.

I believe that I can’t fulfil the mitzvah of Succah. I’m not fit for such a wonderful mitzvah called Succah. I’m not fitting to sit in the shade of the Succah.’

And, know, this happens to each and every one of us.

My thoughts:

Hashem tests us, so that we can grow.

Like the Midrash says, there’s no blade of grass that doesn’t have an angel standing over it, and hitting it, and shouting grow! (Midrash Rabba, Bereshit 10:6).

We need to ‘be hit’ in order to grow. Otherwise, well, we’ll just stay in bed and eat another packet of crisps (at least, that’s what I’d do).

Sometimes, those tests make sense. We do something wrong – we get hit with a nasty surprise.

Sometimes, those tests don’t make such sense to us - Wait a minute? I was trying to do a mitzvah here? Hashem, why are you stopping me?

Those types of test can be much harder. They don't make sense to us, so they require a lot more humility. A lot more acceptance that Hashem knows what he’s doing and that I really don’t know anything.

Like Rabbenu said, this is one of those times that I need to throw away my intellect and just trust in Hashem.

The Rav is making it clear in this piece, that if we want to grow in our avodat Hashem, we’re going to have to go through these types of test.

The question is how are we going to react.

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Jun 16, 2021

Just last night during hitbotdedeut, I was asking Hashem, as I frequently do, about what it means that I wasn't born a Jew, and that I want to be one, and that conversion doesn't look especially possible right now, and what, if anything I should do about it, and what it all means.

I specifically asked if I could hear something specific from the Rav on the subject, as unlikely as that seemed.

And here this is. Wow. Thank you.

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