Friday, July 4, 2008

Soon, we will walk hand in hand

To give my Taglit experience the treatment it deserves will take a lot more time and patience than I have now. Sorry. It will (probably) get done. Meanwhile though, I was asked to help with this years Merkos Shlichus blog, and this was my first contribution:

Sometimes it seems that in life we're always preparing. Preparation is undoubtedly a wonderful thing, and I would probably accomplish a lot more I I ever had time to do it. Since last year on Merkos Shlichus, I've learned and matured in many ways. At least once a week I'd think, "Hey, if I had only done X or Y when I was in Kansas...". But that year of preparation is over. Now it's the real deal. Am I excited? As we say in Minnesota, you betcha!
A year ago I really didn't know what to expect when I went out. This year, of course, I know what to expect. In fact, when I discussed blogging about Shlichus with a friend, he said, "Why bother going out at all? You can just make it up from the comfort of your home. It's all pretty standardized anyway, right?" I laughed, but I had to tell him that this wasn't quite true. Who would ever think to meet a guy dressed as the Kohen Gadol standing in a parking lot in Sedalia, Missouri? That's the only example I can think of at this moment, but it just goes to show you that truth is several times stranger than fiction could ever possibly imagine. Is Merkos Shlichus really about having cool stories to tell at Chassidic Farbrengens? Of course not. It's about bringing Jews closer to their Father in Heaven, which is where all that preparation comes into play. The only way you can give to other people is if you have something yourself. Preparation for Merkos Shlichus doesn't only involve buying books, maps, and food. Preparation means changing yourself, making yourself a vessel for the wisdom of the ages.
After writing the above, I'm feeling rather pretentious and snotty. The truth is that I'm just a Bochur, just a guy, hoping to make a difference in someone's life. On Sunday it's going to be Gimmel Tammuz, the fourteenth anniversary of the Rebbe's passing. A lot of smart and influential people have written much smarter and more influential things than I could ever hope to match. The truth is that I was a kid by Gimmel Tammuz, and I really don't remember too much about it. What I can say is that I hope that my going on Merkos Shlichus will in some way cure the limbo we've been stranded in since then. Every Mitzva we do, every Mitzva we try and help others do brings us closer to the final redemption. Who knows, maybe I won't even have to go out?

Oh yes, one more thing: Rishe Deitsch, don't think I didn't notice that you wrote that this year is the fifteenth Gimmel Tammuz. Does the editors note in the Nshei Chabad Newsletter not get edited?


e said...

This is a really nice post. Where and with whom will you be going on mrekos shlichus? Where can we read your blog?

Just like a guy said...

Oh, now I know what style shtuff you like, Eliezer: shweet and shoppy. As for your question, ask your brother Menachem. He's in charge of that.
How's Israel? More importantly, how's you're Yarmulkeh?