It’s been at least two years since we’d last bought butter in a store. We did get some from friends in Yerushaliyim 6 months ago or so, which we hoarded in the freezer, but butter, especially butter with a good hechsher, has gone Missing in Action throughout Israel.
A friend of my wife's pointed out that while Israel is considered to be a high-tech nation, most of the high-tech seems to only LEAVE Israel. For example, our internet speed maxes out at 3MB/second upload. In the United States, it’s at least 100/MB. Israel JUST passed a bill making it obligatory for government offices to receive email, rather than just fax. And for whatever reason, we can’t seem to get it together to provide butter.
So, now my wife is going to actually make her own butter somehow. Along with her cream cheese she makes every week. We’re slowly becoming more and more Amish.
“But you shall go to my land and to my birthplace, and you shall take a wife for my son, for Isaac." (Bereishis 24:4)
I know of two families here. One is part of a larger, very well-known and very well-respected family in Israel. Super frum, does every stringency in the book plus more, and is well connected. Another is…most certainly not. Their financial situation isn’t great, they have no family, one of the parents has mental issues, etc. The first has two older daughters who are still not married. The second, their oldest daughters were married off quite easily.
Now, I will say this: I have not yet married off children, nor am I “in the parsha," so one could say “who am I to talk” and they would be right. However, Toras Emes…
Marrying off children, when it comes down to it, is similar to any other issue that deals with faith and trust in Hashem. It’s similar to having financial stability, good health, good children, etc. You have to do your part, but you also have to know throughout the whole time that Hashem is running things.
On the other hand, however, it’s a lot more stressful, yet, fundamentally, it’s the same basic issue.
Like all things, one must try his best to internalize that we must do our hishtadlus, but ultimately, Hashem runs the program. We have all heard that Hashem sends us only things that we can handle. However, and I’ve heard this from several bigger people, many times people bring tests on themselves, and in that case they will not necessarily be able to handle it. Or, in many cases, people have the ability to pass the test, but they put in their own stumbling blocks that make it difficult or impossible to pass the test that they were given.
I once heard a talk, I forgot who it was, where the speaker had to go to a shiva house for somebody whose child was killed in a car accident. It so happens that this child was not buckled in, because his parents were not so careful in this regard. Of course, he gets there, and the parents are “consoling” themselves that “everything is from Hashem." He grew very angry, but kept quiet. He really wanted to yell at them for having such a terrible attitude. Yes, everything is from Hashem, but when YOU REFUSE TO DO WHAT YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO Do, then YOU bring troubles on yourself.
On the other hand, if somebody is not bringing on his own tests and is acting properly according to the level of faith and trust that he is on, one can rest assured that Hashem will take care of what he needs. Of course, it’s important to know that HASHEM knows what you need a bit better than you do. So, things don’t always work out according to YOUR plans, but they will according to HIS.
With that, I wish you a great Shabbos!