Beha'aloscha: No Matter What...

My wife got a call from her boss the other day, who was clearly in an emotional state.  He told her that as he was leaving the Kotel after davening, a young boy, maybe bar-mitzvah, was crying and asked him to daven for his brother (Elkana ben Ruchama), who has been held in Gaza since Simchas Torah.  He said to my wife, that for many (at least in the center of the country), life has continued.  Yet, we still need to remember that there are many that are still left and suffering in captivity, and never let them out of our thoughts.

I couldn't help but notice the maturity of the boy.  Thousands are taking to the streets to protest the government (as they have for the past several years), demanding new elections (as they have for the past several years) and to give into all of Hamas's demands, in the hope that the rest of the hostages will come home.

I personally would love to see new elections and believe that this government has done a terrible job on many levels (not the army, the government).   Ironically, these same people demonize Netanyahu, and praise Biden, who everybody agrees has caused a lot of problems with the war effort.  Yet, many in the country have no doubt that these protests are only hurting the chances of getting the hostages back and are causing needless strife.

And to be honest, who will this country elect?  Who else has the support of the people?  Each politician is as political and incompetent as the next.  I'm not even sure if it's even possible for the country to do any hishtadlus in the political arena.  And here you have a 13-year-old boy who seems to get it more than so many others.  Instead of wasting time and energy on stupidity, hatred, and, quite frankly, damaging the country by splitting it even more, he goes straight to the Source of all Solutions.

I'm not sure if I'm correct or not, since I don't follow things so closely, but I believe that those that have been released, and their families, who, while in captivity, focused some energy on Hashem, don't take part in these things.  I know of several families/hostages that during and after the ordeal took some mitzvos upon themselves and quietly retired to the side, while those who are … less in touch with their spiritual side, well, in the words of one of the leaders, "I will burn this country down."  Again, I could be wrong, but it's something that I noticed.

My Rosh Yeshiva would often call Hashem, "The Puppet Master."  And those who we think are in charge are merely puppets.  This is true regarding politicians and this is true regarding those on the streets.  It will be interesting to see what will be.  But in the meantime, we must continuously remind ourselves Who controls everything, and in times like these, we need to "go with the flow," strengthen ourselves, and let Hashem take care of things, since clearly we cannot.

Okay, on to more important things.

The original plan was that the first-born would play the role of the Leviim; working in the Beis HaMikdash and helping the Kohanim.  However, after the whole "Golden Calf Scandal," they lost that privilege and the entire tribe of Levi stood up and earned it.  In this week's parsha, when Hashem is telling the nation how He is taking the tribe of Levi "as his," He mentions "Bnei Yisroel" five times in one pasuk.  Rashi brings a Medresh and explains that each mentioning corresponds to one book of the Torah.  The reasoning?  To tell Bnei Yisroel, that even though He is elevating the tribe of Levi, He is NOT demoting the rest of the nation, and that they are still just as dear to Him as they always were.

Here we see that an event occurred, mistakes were made, repercussions were permanent, and yet, Hashem is saying, "Don't worry!  You are still dear to Me!"  Even when we make big mistakes, we are still important, no matter what the consequences were.  This is obviously no different than that of the relationship between parents and children.  Sometimes the child does something which requires, or naturally results in, a major punishment/consequence.  And yet, no matter how disappointed the parents are, they still have a special place in their hearts for their child.

I hope we can all internalize this regarding any mistakes we might have and/or eventually will make.  No matter what we did, we're still dear to Hashem.

With that, I wish you all a quiet and relaxing Shabbos.