Hammered

Posted: June 15, 2012 in Uncategorized
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Hammered

2008 changed many lives here in America and around the world as the recession began to pick up speed. It spread across not only our land but many lands and now four years later many countries are still feeling its affect and it is not over. Like one Rabbi said, G-d shook the earth like shaking a blanket.

What is the purpose of this world wide shaking?

“Everything in this world comes straight from its Maker. He will shake our emuna for the sole purpose of strengthening it.” Dovber HaLevi – The Emuna Fortress

Many of us have been hammered in one way or another not only through this recession but through the ongoing trials of life.

If we had it our way we would want smooth sailing without any disturbances but a sail boat cannot sail without wind. A smooth sea causes the boat to be still and not move.

Rabbi Lazer Brody spoke of a saying, “The child never touched the floor.” This is a way of saying the child is, ’spoiled’. This saying displays a child never put down; he was always in his mother’s arms. He never learned how to walk on his own.

G-d does not want our boats to sit still nor does He want us to be spoiled; so what does He do? He sends us a wind and He puts us down and backs off just a bit to teach us to walk. Yes the sea gets rough at times and we may fall and get bruised in the process but with each gust of wind our boat moves forward and when we learn to stand we will take steps forward as well.

Emuna is the Hebrew word translated into English as ‘faith’. As always in translation there is loss. The Hebrew word, emuna has much more meaning that what faith denotes.

My learning and pondering on the subject of emuna over the past few weeks have taught me a lot. This morning while reading another article on the subject and pondering points that Rabbi Brody has made on some of his teachings; I have listened to over the past few days have led my thoughts down another trail that I want to share.

I began to think about how our emuna is like a light. It shines outward. With every trial and test we go through our emuna grows and the light shines a bit brighter. This made me remember about a specific aspect of the Menorah that was in the Tabernacle.

Shemos/Exodus 25:31; 37:17

You shall make a Menorah of pure gold, hammered out shall the Menorah shall be made….

He made the Menorah of pure gold; hammered out did he make the Menorah….

The Menorah that would become the light of the Tabernacle an Temple was made out of pure gold but before it became a vessel of light it took a beating so to speak. Every aspect of the Menorah was hammered. It was completely made of one piece of gold; nothing else was made separate and forged in later.

The Menorah would take its form and shape from the pounding of a hammer. With each blow of the hammer, it came closer to its intended purpose and service.

Our lives like this Menorah. Our Maker pounds on us to shape us and to create a vessel for His light that is contained in each soul. Before we can truly shine the light of God we must be shaped, our emuna must be tried and tested on all fronts. He sends the wind, creates the waves and swings the hammer all for our benefit so that we can move forward and become what we are meant to be.

When I pondered these two passages even farther; I see that the Menorah cast two different lights.

  1. The primary mission of the Menorah was to be a vessel for the oil that would burn inside its cups and bowls. This oil is like our soul that is on the inside of us and when lit with the holy fire of God shines bright for all to see.
  2. With each blow of the Craftsman Hammer not only does the Menorah take shape but the hammer leaves a small indentation that becomes a reflector. When light strikes, it reflects back, each indentation shines a different reflection and makes the Menorah glimmer in the light.

The same is with us, with each blow of the hammer we take shape and with every indentation left by the hammer shines a different aspect of our emuna.

Those who are looking for easy street are not fit to become a menorah. To become a vessel of light we have to take a beating; this pounding of the Craftsman’s hammer is not of our destruction but a continuation of our creation – the gold was already there but it had not been of any service until the Craftsman began forming it with His hammer. Then from the first strike of the hammer the gold began its service and to shine its light.

“You shall make a Menorah of pure gold, hammered out shall the Menorah be made…”

  

 

 

 

 

 

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