I wrote this letter to Dina, after a long and difficult year. She thought that I should publish it because it is a letter/dvar Torah. Perhaps other women will draw strength from it as well.
Have a happy and sweet year!
Dear Dina my heart of gold,
This year has been difficult, your tears didn’t go unnoticed. I’m sure the tears I saw, were only the tip of the ice burg. How many were shared with your pillow, how many were written in to your blog and how many have you held back.
Who can understand the heart of a Jewish mother? It is like you have a sixth sense, only Jewish women have it. It is a closeness to Hashem, as if you can sense His sadness as well. Sometimes you sense His joy.
This is talked about in the last mishnah in Sanhedrin. That on Yom Kippur, the girls would go dancing in the vineyards, just like Tu B’Av. What was special about those times? They are times of forgiveness of sins, and the girls could sense Hashem’s joy, which caused them to well with joy, this caused them to go out and dance.
Now, if women can sense Hashem’s joy, it would follow that they sense His sadness as well. And so you cry even more.
I think the deepest crying is for the children. I think this is why you identify so strongly with the Haftora of the second day of Rosh Hashana. Rochel is crying for her children and there is nothing to console her. It just seems endless, with no reprieve in sight. So much work, so much selfless giving and giving, with no gain no reward. The Haftora continues. Hashem says, you can stop crying, there is reward for your work. There is hope, the children will return to their borders. Moshiach is coming and it’s your work, your tears, your love and your joy that brought him.
Your suffering is not in vain. You will see the fruits of your hard work and you will be honored. I don’t know why Hashem chose us, but he did. We, like Rochel, won’t give up and we won’t let him down.
In this week’s parsha we read the words from Moshe to Yehoshua “chazak v’ematz”, be strong and courageous. Perhaps it is our bitachon, simcha and emunah that will bring an end to this dark galus.
I am with you,
Your Yosef Yitzchak
Rabbi Yitzi Hurwitz is the founder of Chabad Jewish Center in Temecula, CA. He is married to Dina and has 7 children and is currently living in Los Angeles as he battles ALS disease. Visit his blog at yitzihurwitz.blogspot.com. To donate to his medical costs, visit hurwitzfamilyfund.com