Monday, August 3, 2020

Still Waiting

My last post was written as the world was closing down due to the pandemic that is now simultaneously historic and continuing to unfold before our eyes. With each passing day, week and month, I held off on blogging as I waited... attend a full wedding in person instead of "zooming in" or rushing out, not wanting to be in too crowded a place for too long.
Mazal Tov to all the Amazing Couples
whose guests lists were/are limited but
whose joy knows no bounds! smile, unmasked, at friends and acquaintances in the supermarket and welcome guests back to our Shabbos table. plan a much-postponed visit Home.

I'm still waiting.

Let me clarify. I am grateful beyond words that we have gone back to our shuls - though hosting a minyan in our backyard is a pleasant memory that stands out from the many stressful ones.
One of several "backyard" minyanim on our block.

I am grateful that my grandchildren are having fun in summer camps (with corona precautions in place) and able to join us - one family per week - for socially-distanced Shabbos meals.

Above all, I thank the Almighty for sparing all those who have not been struck by the virus itself. May it be His will that everyone who is well stay that way and anyone who isn't be granted a quick, complete recovery. This won't be over til it's over but there's some comfort in knowing that we're all still waiting together.

Last week, we marked the 17th (Gregorian) anniversary of our return from Israel. This year, it coincided with the eve of Tisha b'Av - the Ninth of Av, the most intense day of mourning for the destruction of our two holy Temples and our national exile from the Land. In a way, I think it was a Divine kindness that the anniversary of my personal exile from the Land usually falls sometime during the three week period of national mourning. It's easy to Remember Jerusalem when the entire Jewish Nation is remembering with you.

Every day, every year since the destruction of the Second Temple nearly 2,000 years ago, we've waited...
...for an end to the spiritual distancing. see G-d's presence unmasked in our world and in our lives. gather again with all Am Yisrael (the Jewish Nation) in a rebuilt Jerusalem.
Another Tisha b'Av has come and gone and we're still waiting.

This Wednesday is Tu b'Av - the 15th day of the month of Av. For secular Israelis, it is similar to Valentine's Day but its origins are actually Biblical and Talmudic. In Temple times, it was a festive day when lots of matchmaking took place. That spirit is still in place today. I look forward to rushing out of not one but two miraculous weddings this Wednesday!

If you know a single who is still waiting to find his/her soulmate, check this out: And to all you singles out there, may your prayers soon be answered and celebrated with an unlimited guest list and joy that knows no bounds!

Everyone is still waiting for something - for something unpleasant to end or something beautiful to begin. As King David famously and prophetically said, when the waiting is finally over, we will be like dreamers (Psalms 126:1). Click here to see what that might look like and have a very happy Tu b'Av!