What marvelous thing do ‘babysitting sleeping kids’, ‘long delays in airports’ and ‘washing a sink of dishes’ have in common?
You can read while doing em!
(Yes, yes, if you put the book on the counter and pay your younger sibling 3 cents per page-turn.)
Ah, reading. Joy, safety, and adventure all tucked into the tiny, beloved print.
The world of books was my favorite world until the end of my teens. (Then, the world around me lured my interest more than the pages in front of my nose.)
I’m sure many of you can relate. (If not, you might have experienced the other side of the coin - the frustration at someone’s never-ending visit to the bathroom…)
Often when reading, I would suddenly pause with concern when I was towards the end of the book. The plot was intriguing, the characters were colorful and relatable and the writing was delightful.
So what bothered me?
Noticing the small amount of pages that remained, I would be full of doubt that the author would manage to resolve all of the open issues and conflicts that were in the story before the pages ran out.
How can so many mysteries be solved in so few pages??
Then, inevitably, I would smirk.
“That’s backward thinking Chava,” I would remind myself.
“The author is not allotted a certain amount of pages and then only afterward does he sit down to fit all his thoughts and ideas into the designated pages; rather, he comes with all his thoughts and ideas, writes, and then when he’s done writing, the last page arrives.”
I sometimes make the same mistake regarding the world around me.
I go through my day, my life, and then once in a while, I suddenly panic. Full of anxiety, I notice an approaching event, a landmark, a decision I have to make. The deadline looms close and there are still so many dangling threads, tricky complications, and various obstacles that need to be cleared up in order to get there on time. I am trying to trust Hashem, but seriously, how can He fix so many things in such a short time? How will I make it? How will I succeed? How will I get to the “last page” with clarity, wholesomeness, and peace? Will I even get there?
“Backward thinking, Chava, backward thinking.”
It’s not that Time controls the world and Hashem has to somehow fit Himself and His ingenious plan into the limited days or hours left.
Hashem comes with His thoughts and ideas, Hashem decides how things will play out, and then when Hashem decides the time is ripe for something to happen, it happens. There will always be time for all solutions and resolutions because Hashem controls time, not the other way around.
I don’t need to stress out.
Hashem is the Author of my life, and He is the best, kindest and smartest Author possible.
This post is dedicated by Anonymous to those who are waiting to have children.
Chava Isacovitch delights in uncovering Hashem behind and beneath every facet of life. She writes and lectures on a variety of topics and is the author of Aharon's Staff: Practical Chinuch Tips from Chassidus. She also coaches parents and teachers of children with behavioral challenges. Chava lives in Eretz Yisroel.