Help Me Stop The Rain Prediction from Our Outdoor Wedding!

The Talmudic sage Rabbi Yochanan taught:

There are three keys that G-d holds, and never hands over to anyone else. They are the key to rain, the key to childbirth, and the key to revival of the dead.

No matter how advanced our society becomes, no matter how much progress we make in technology and science, and no matter how many superstitious magic tricks we perform, some things are simply out of human control.

The mystery of creating new life still baffles us. The greatest doctors cannot explain why some people conceive a child with ease, while others have so much difficulty. We are privileged to live in a time with so many options for assisted fertility. But in the end only G-d can decide when a baby is to be born. The key to life is in His hands.

As with the beginning of life, so with its end. Despite all the medical advancements and extended life expectancy, we still can’t bring someone back from the dead. We believe the time will come when G-d will revive the dead and our departed loved ones will live again. In the meantime, death is the final frontier that man cannot conquer.

Then, in between birth and death, there’s the weather. We can’t control the rain. You can plan an outdoor function months in advance, only to see your plans upturned by a sudden downpour. A huge sporting event with tens of thousands of spectators can be rained out and called off within minutes. And when there’s a drought we pray for rain, but we can’t force it to come.

All the scientific research can’t explain the mysteries of childbirth. And all the medical know-how can’t bring the dead back to life. And all the brooms in every tree can’t stop it raining. We need to humbly look up to the heavens, and acknowledge that those keys are not in our hands.

This acknowledgement is the antidote to what’s known in Greek as hubris, or in Latin as chutzpah 🙂 Humans can be arrogant sometimes, thinking we are in control and have the power to do whatever we want. But we didn’t choose when to be born. We can’t come back when we die. And we can’t do anything if it rains on our party. We need to trust that G-d does His job, and we should get on with ours.

Note: Jewish law encourages seeking fertility treatments under rabbinical guidance
Sources Taanis 2a, Devarim Rabbah 7:6 and by Rabbi Moss and Rabbi Mendel Bluming. Mendel Bluming has served the Potomac area community since 2003 through the Chabad Shul of Potomac

Chanukah Message- Life’s a Dreidel

Take a dreidel and spin it. It’s fascinating. You never know which side it will land on. It could fall on the Gimmel, which means you win, or the Shin, which means you lose.

It seems totally random. You just spin and something happens. But really it isn’t. Every spin has an exact amount of kinetic energy to cause a measured number of turns. The table surface provides an exact amount of friction, and the air pushes the dreidel in a certain way, so it falls exactly as it is supposed to. Nothing is left to chance.

Life is like that. It may seem random sometimes. Things just happen, you win or you lose, it falls this way or that for no apparent reason. But that is not really so. There is a divine hand spinning the world. Every turn is deliberate, every experience you have is supposed to happen, and whether you win or lose, there is a reason behind it.

There are no self-spinning dreidels. There is always a hand behind the spin. And you are exactly where you are meant to be.

Rabbi Mendel Bluming serves the community in Potomac Maryland since 2000. Menachem Mendel Bluming and his family represent Chabad which teaches us to see the Hand behind every detail in life. Credits for this article to Rabbi Moss as well.

Celebrating Chanukah

On Chanukah we celebrate the menorah that is the central symbol of the holiday, not the astounding military victory and attainment of freedom. Because freedom is only worth what you do with it, how you live your life as a result. Because you are free do you kindle the menorah of spreading light and holiness in the world? Money and freedom are just energy… how you use them is what matters.

Rabbi Mendel Bluming serves the Jewish community in Potomac Maryland. Menachem Mendel Bluming and his wife invite you to join the communal menorah lightings