From Deepest Despair to Loving Fulfillment - Jewish Outlook

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From Deepest Despair to Loving Fulfillment

Sylvia was a courageous woman living in one of the isolated settlements of Judea. She and her husband were raising a large family with 8 children. One day, her beloved husband was murdered by an Arab terrorist.

One year later, still not being able to recover from the shock, she found herself in dark despair. Her home was in utter chaos. The children were endlessly demanding attention. Fortunately a few neighbors and community members were pitching in, in every way they could with prepared meals and childcare. Yet she realized she was sinking into a downward spiral and soon she wouldn’t be able to take care of her children. Every corner of her home was in utter disarray. From the deepest depths she prayed.

It was in that darkest, seemingly totally hopeless time that she began to sense a calm, clear, intuitive guidance coming from a deep place within. It was comforting her, assuring her that she was not alone, that she would overcome. She chose to trust in that inner prompting. It felt like a lifesaving new light in her life.

Now this inner guidance asked her if she would pick herself up for a few moments and choose one spot in the house to clean up, perhaps just to organize one drawer. She accepted to do that. As her inner voice continued instructing her, she realized there was a certain higher meaning in her actions. What was her intent in cleaning this drawer? What was the purpose she could name this drawer for? She took everything out and cleaned it up. Still staying attuned to her guidance, she placed back into it only what was connected to the purpose she had chosen. This felt very good. She wanted to continue, but her inner voice told her no, that she could continue on the next day. Each consecutive day she continued in this way, learning new meanings, connecting in prayer and lifting herself through each of her activities, filling them with loving, peaceful, clear intent. Now she knew that her life was truly meaningful, she knew that she was treasured and guided by an Eternal Power present with her, strengthening her.

As the days continued, she was able to put order in her kitchen, the living room, and the bedrooms. Every one of her multiple, varied household chores became a source of new introspective higher meaning, a source of deep inner satisfaction. Preparing her meals became a sacred task. Especially when baking the bread rolls of challah for the Sabbath, each ingredient was invested with a symbolic meaning connected with a prayer. The house felt like a sanctuary. The children, watching her with her calm, focused attention also began to calm down, to feel comforted, joyful. Soon they also eagerly wanted to help her with her tasks. Every step of the way was unfolding in harmony as she kept tuning into prayerful awareness.

Soon her neighbors became puzzled at her new shining joy, watching the gradual transformation of her home and in her children, wondering how it happened. She shared some of her experiences with them and they asked to learn from her. Small informal gatherings began to form around her, which soon became much larger.

Most of the women in those settlements certainly know about the power of prayer and positive choices. They are willingly learning to practice this art of coping with life’s challenges from a loving source of awareness, and connectedness. Soon Sylvia’s gatherings were so large that she asked other women to create other meetings and to continue practicing together this seemingly simple, yet life-transforming art of living.

This continual stream of blessings was initiated from a certain choice at a moment of deepest despair: the choice to listen to the soul’s higher, loving, intuitive directives, and acting on it. It told her how precious she was, how intrinsically valuable her endeavors as a mother was, how precious her life’s purpose is. It reminded her that her challenges were there to learn from, to master the art of being strong and victorious, and to serve God in love, joy and trust.

 

 


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Daily Torah Quote

Joke of the day

Once there was a Yeshiva student going out on his first date. He went to his friend for advice. “What do I talk about with the girl?”

His friend said, “It’s as easy as pie. First you talk about love. Then you talk about family. And then you talk about philosophy.”

OK, the great moment arrives. They sit down and first he says, “Tell me honestly, do you love lokshen (noodles)?”

She says, “No, I hate lokshen.”

OK, let’s try family. “Does your brother like lokshen?”

“I don’t have a brother.”

Oh, no, this is not so simple. Let’s try philosophy. “If you would have a brother, do you think he would like lokshen?”