A Beacon of Faith and Hope

By Esther Gross

When a person wants to sample a new brand of wine he makes certain to clean his crystal glass to perfection so that there will be no residue to detract from the wine’s exotic, sweet flavor. So it is with one who wants to acquire faith and trust. He must be willing to erase all traces of worry, doubt, and fear and only then can he experience complete faith and trust in Hashem.

If you were to hold a United States coin in your hand you would notice a different picture on each side. It is the same with our reactions. We can choose one side of the coin and allow our doubts and fears to envelop us, or we can choose to strengthen our faith and trust in Hashem. The words, “In G-d we trust” embossed on the coin can serve as a gentle reminder that you always have a choice of attitude. It’s simply a matter of flipping the coin.

Bitachon is something we do. Bitachon stems from the root word tiach, plaster. When we are pulled by the streams of a mighty river, we must stick to Hashem in the same way as plaster sticks to the wall. We must trust with all our hearts that when the chips are down, Hashem will bail us out of our difficult plight.

Some people find it extremely difficult to rely on Hashem when their problem seems unmanageable. They question, “How can I totally trust in Hashem when things are so difficult? Doesn’t that mean that I’m fooling myself or that I am simply not being realistic? Who says I’m deserving of Hashem’s goodness and kindness?”

According to the Maggid of Mezeritch, the mishna, Know what is above you (Pirkei Avos 2:1), can be translated to read, “Know that whatever is above, in Heaven, is from you, your action for good or otherwise.” Measure for measure, it is as if Hashem says, “If you rely on Me, against all odds and beyond all calculation, I, too will relate to you beyond any calculation.”

!דאגה= דער אייבערשטער גייט העלפן

A realist is one who has faith and trust in Hashem. Having faith means getting realistic. Surrender your worries to Hashem. Trust that He will help you and that you will experience unimaginable miracles. Even if you have only a small amount of faith to plant, be sure to plant it. In time it will grow so large, it won’t leave any room for doubt and fear.

Acronym – DOUBT: Don’t Obsess, Utilize Belief+Trust!

A pessimist sees only the dark side of the clouds and mopes; a philosopher sees both sides and shrugs; an optimist does not see the clouds at all – he’s walking on them.

Some days it might feel simply impossible to pick yourself up, put on a smiling face, and carry on. You don’t have to face this difficulty alone. Make from your regesh (feelings) a gesher (bridge)! You can build a bridge of communication, or you can turn a deaf ear to your feelings and build a broad, brick wall of resentment inside. Resentment is anger turned inward, and it’s fatal to the cause!

Share your losses with someone who is trustworthy. Share the pain. Share the shattered dreams and broken promises. Share the worry and fear. Share all the disappointments. Feelings have to be expressed, not suppressed. Feelings when not dealt with, follow you like a shadow, engendering symptoms, fear, and pain.

Shlomo Hamelech says: “If there is worry in a man he should tell it (to a friend) and unburden himself.” (Mishlei 12L25).

When we divide the word ידיד (friend) we get יד (hand) and יד (hand). The numerical value of ידיד is 28, which is the same as כח (strength). When two friends are there to hold each other’s hands in times of joy and also in times of grief, they have great strength!

Esther Gross is a certified life coach and the author of You Are Not Alone, A Yid Is Keinmool Nisht Alein, ChA-Zak, AmA-Zing Parenting, MA-Zal Tov, You’re Married – Now What!

Her new book “The States of Happiness,” distributed by Feldheim Publishers, is available in all Judaica stores.
The author can be reached at estherchazak@gmail.com.

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