Recognizing the ‘יד ה-the hand of Hashem in everyday life is so valuable; seeing through the natural way of the world and knowing that it is really Hashem behind the scene. People growing in Emunah begin to change their thought pattern. They notice Hashem in everything they do. It is such a beautiful service of Hashem.
Somebody told me that he has a children’s book, which tells the story of a little girl who woke up one morning, on her birthday, expecting to hear happy birthday from every member of her family, but nobody said anything. She really wanted a birthday party, but it seemed like everyone forgot. She decided she would throw herself a party. Meanwhile, her family was planning a surprise party for her later on, and had hidden everything away. She thinks to herself, “I need a cake.” She goes down to the basement freezer, and it just so happens that there is a big beautiful birthday cake there. “Perfect,” she thinks to herself. Then, she decides she needs games for the party, and she found all of her favorite games in a closet in a shopping bag. She thought, “Wow, just what I wanted.” She went to look for party favors, and it just so happened there were unopened packages of party favors all in one cabinet. “Great,” she thought, “Now I have everything I need to make myself a party.”
She carried everything to the kitchen and there she saw her family, and they all yelled, “Surprise!” This little girl thought she just happened to find a birthday cake and games. In reality, each item was placed in its spot for her birthday party. This is the story of our lives. We go here, and we happen to find exactly what we are looking for. We go there, and we find the perfect merchandise to sell. It was all a setup. Hashem was behind everything. But it looks so natural, and if we don’t think with Emunah, we could miss Him.
A man named Jack told me a few years ago that he had to go to the Orient on business. He would be there over Shabbat in a place with no Minyan. It bothered him a lot, so he investigated and discovered that a new Minyan may have opened up there. He was given the number of a person to call when he arrived. On the plane, there was a problem with one of the seats, and the person who had that seat was moved right next to Jack. He spoke to the man for a minute and it turns out that he was also Jewish, travelling on business. However, he didn’t even get his name, since he liked to sleep on these long plane rides. He politely excused himself and turned away to sleep. When he arrived at his hotel, he called to inquire about the Minyan. He was delighted to hear that there was a brand new Minyan that recently opened. Just then, he noticed in the lobby the other Jewish man who had sat next to him on the plane. He went over to him and told him that he had just found out about the new Minyan, if he was interested. The man responded, “Wow. I am so excited. Everyone told me that there is no Minyan here. But, I am in the year of saying Kaddish for my father, and I never missed a Kaddish yet. This was going to be my first time. You just saved me. Thank You.” Jack asked the man’s name, and he recognized it. “Who was your father?” he asked. It turns out, that man’s father was the one who helped put Jack into business years before and taught him everything he knew about the business. Now, the מכין מצעדי גבר-the Planner of man’s footsteps, with clear Hashgacha Pratit, set it up that he could help him by enabling his son to say Kaddish for him.
Hashem made a problem with the chair on the plane and put him right next to Jack to get them to meet. It was all a setup. Hashem plants what we need just in the right spot at the right time. If we recognize it and thank Him, then we are growing in Emunah.
- Daily Emunah, Lesson # 812, Rabbi David Ashear