I’m strangely relaxed. Kind of in a stupor. It is Rosh Chodesh Elul. I have all kinds of “shoulds” floating in my brain. I should be working harder. I should be planning something. I should be making phone calls. But I’m sitting in Barnes & Noble drinking a sweet iced tea looking at the harbor. I’m giving myself permission to stop with the frenzied hishtadlus (self-effort) for a minute.
I had a lot of revelations this morning. Clarity.
Yesterday, I wrote about my future husband and how we’re going to find each other and “swoon.” This morning I started thinking about what would make me swoon – not poetry or silly words or love songs or roses. Substance. Kindness. Mowing the grass. A big truck and muscles to haul stuff. Five years of tax returns with substantial income. I was putting a lot on my future husband and myself. I was making finding him and choosing him my escape. Escape from financial hardship. Escape from emotional pain.
Stop judging me. (I’m being brutally honest because 1) I know I’m normal and 2) Honesty is all you want to read about.) Everyone would say look for someone financially stable and emotionally capable. Everyone would say it and has said it. They just would also say don’t look for your match to escape. I get it. I didn’t realize I was doing it. I thought I was just being smart and having high standards and being ready for the next stage.
Today Rebbetzin Tziporah Harris spoke on Miraculous Salvations during the 40 days leading up to Yom Kippur. Today is Day 1. Rosh Chodesh Elul. I was crying before she even started speaking, just to be in her comforting presence of holiness and truth. I need a few salvations. I need a salvation through a divorce ruling. I need a salvation in income (I got the FACTS bill for my kids’ tuition and whoah it’s intense).
Tzipora opened her talk and the floodgates of my heart opened too. “We are living in the last days and the souls living in these days will face great hardships. Mishnah Sotah says in the last days everything we relied on for security will fail us – government systems, judicial systems, home and family. And when we’re left with nothing but Hashem, we’ll know He’s all we need. He’s our security.”
Bam! I’m craving security. I’ve been on shaky footing for too long. My marriage, the family I hoped to give my kids, the court system, and to some degree the religious system have all failed me. Everything I counted on for security was yanked from under me, burned up, and ashes blown away in the wind. What’s left? Me and Hashem.
I’m praying and crying to Him now, and under all that emotion I feel the solid ground of knowing He will come through with miraculous salvation. He has done it about a thousand times in the past two years. Salvation can come through any source at any time. Money can come from anywhere at any time. A future husband, can come with or without references, from anywhere at anytime. I’m not limited by rules or regulations or practicality or romance. I’m not limited by scholarships or ex-husbands or judges or time. Hashem has no limitations.
His love for me. Tzipora said that the miracles come not from our deserving, not even from our prayers. But from his abundant unfathomable love. This morning before her talk, I said to Hashem, What am I supposed to do here? What am I supposed to “get” before you release the salvations? My head kicks in and I think, work harder, make phone calls, make plans. Then Tzipora gets to my heart and says Trust Hashem and thank Him in advance and feel relief in advance for the salvation that’s already mapped out and on its way.
So, thank you Hashem. I’m not trusting the judge or the scholarships or my future husband. I’m getting my head straight and my heart straight and slowing down on the plans for today only. A woman’s holy day.
I’m sitting in Barnes & Nobles drinking my sweet tea and trusting You.