Written by Rabbi N.W.
Several years ago, I was driving through New Jersey and stopped to daven Shachris at a Chabad house, and being that it was Chof Ches Nissan I expected that after reading the Hayom Yom, my fellow Shliach would mention something to his mekurovim about the importance of the day. I was however unpleasantly surprised when he did not do so, so in a half jokingly way I told him, “I’m sure everyone here knows how special today is, so you don’t need to mention it”.
The local Shliach seemed to think for a minute and then said words which continue to frighten me to this day, “Oh you’re referring to Chof Ches Nissan?…well the whole Moshiach obsession is not the corporate image we want to project here”. Shocked and taken completely off-guard, I mumbled something about the Rebbe’s letter to Israeli President Yitzhak Ben-Zvi, stating that since even before he was three, the Rebbe dreamed for the Messianic era.
As I continued my drive I kept asking myself, how is it possible that a Shliach of the Rebbe could so openly disregard the very raison d’etre for which our Rebbe created the whole Shlichus movement? Namely to expedite the arrival of Moshiach! That we should not stay in Galus for an extra second. Yet here was a Shliach, who is older than me, who was there in 5752 when our Mishaleich emphatically and unequivocally stated that our current Shlichus is l’ekabbolas Pnei Moshaich Tzidkeinu. I just couldn’t get my head around it, every time I heard his words in my head, it was like ice water being poured over me.
Later I spoke to a Mashpia about this, and he explained me something which is so cruelly true. When a person has a personal insecurity or jealousy in associated with an issue, he with (either consciously or subconsciously) discredit that issue. Some of us justify keeping Moshaich hush-hush by saying, what will people say? We don’t want to push people away? But the truth is today Chabad has a better image then it ever has, and this is in no small way thanks to the confidence most of us have in our emunah in the Rebbe, and feel no self-consciousness in sharing the message we’re charged with.
Just ask any Shliach who has launched a Moshiach campaign or shiur, has it Chv’s driven anyone away? Or has it only served to create interest and cultivate greater involvement with his mekurovim. People have a natural dispensation to want to hear and learn the objective truth, especially on something which they may perceive as controversial. Lastly, through warming up others about Moshaich, your own emunah will be aroused.
So my dear fellow Shluchim, I’m not one to write Emails or Op-eds, but when something hurts, we scream. When you come in for the Kinus to recharge, don’t lose the forest for the trees, amongst all of the seminars, remember what our goal is, and let everyone know about it.