web analytics
September 15, 2014 / 20 Elul, 5774
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post
Apartment 758x530 Africa-Israel at the Israel Real Estate Exhibition in New York

Africa Israel Residences, part of the Africa Israel Investments Group led by international businessman Lev Leviev, will present 7 leading projects on the The Israel Real Estate Exhibition in New York on Sep 14-15, 2014.



God Loves Our Lost Children – And So Must We

Front-Page-013114

The Talmud cites the verse that speaks of God as the One “Who dwells among them even in their impurity.” Rav Tzadok of Lublin explains that we are still called “the portion of Hashem” even if we are mired in shmutz and defilement. Each of us is, by nature, always and forever connected to Hashem.

* * * * *

So how should a parent react when he or she feels betrayed, hurt, and frustrated by the behavior of his or her off–the-derech child? God Himself has shown us how: with love and acceptance.

Even as a child descends to the most shameful muck, you must love him, just as God loves us no matter how far we fall.

God shows absolute and unconditional love and acceptance, even in the midst of our greatest defilement, a defilement that led to the churban and our exile. Didn’t God descend to the 49th and lowest level of defilement to salvage us from Mitzrayim? Where would we be now if God had simply abandoned us because He didn’t want to be seen in such muck?

If God can do it, shouldn’t we? Has any off-the-derech child done worse than our forefathers? If God accompanied His children in the depths of their despair during the generations of galus, shouldn’t we walk that extra mile for the sake of our children?

But how to take the first step?

That first step is so simple – and so hard. It requires us to ask why our child has fallen. The reason the question is so hard is that we have to be fully prepared to hear the answer. And there is an answer to the question. Do not think for a moment that one day a child wakes up and thinks, “Shabbos is no longer beautiful.” Your wonderful child does not simple conclude that “treif is better than kosher.”

Something happened to push him or her off the derech.

And do not be satisfied with mumbled generalities or shrugs of the shoulder. There is a reason. Find it. It requires a trauma to transform a good, caring child filled with Yiddishkeit into a stranger wandering the streets.

This transformation was not a choice; it was thrust upon the child. When a young person rebels in this way, it is because his or her neshamah is in pain. What might the trauma be? Too often it is betrayal or abuse on the part of a trusted and respected adult.

Impossible, you think? If you believe such abuse could never happen “in my community,” seek out the wisdom of Rabbi Moshe Bak (Innocent Heart at 888-506-7162) or Mrs. Ruchama Clapman of MASK (718-758-0400) or reach out to Avi Fishoff (TwistedParenting@gmail.com) and learn not only that such abuse is possible but, in many cases, probable.

And learn from them that there is a way to get your child back.

Your child has not turned away from you and Torah “just because.” There is a reason for his or her pain. Find out what it is so that healing can begin. Do not push your child away, which serves only to deepen the pain.

Our off-the-derech children need our love and understanding, not our retribution.

Think: If your child suffered, God forbid, from cancer, would you allow your own shame or frustration to keep you from doing everything in your power to help your child? Of course not. In the same manner, do not allow shame or frustration to keep you from helping your off-the-derech child.

The road back is paved with love, understanding, hugs, and honest communication. The Krule Rebbe explains, “If someone slips on an icy road and breaks a leg, he needs months of physical therapy until he can walk again…. Why is this boy different? He has been broken, shattered. It will take months and months, often even longer, until he can walk on his own two feet again.”

About the Author: Rabbi Dr. Eliyahu Safran is an educator, author and lecturer. He can be reached at e1948s@aol.com.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “God Loves Our Lost Children – And So Must We”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
A Jew, a soldier and a Druze watch - very carefully - the Syrian side of the Golan Heights.
IDF Stands By as Al Qaeda Offensive Threatens Golan Farmers
Latest Indepth Stories
Gas Pump

If simple fuel choice were implemented, the power of petroleum and those who sell it would cease.

ISIS on the Temple Mount

Value of IS: It enables people to see the place to which all other Islamist fascism is headed.

Eller-091214-Word

“When Frank does something he does it well and you don’t have to worry about dotting the i’s or crossing the t’s.”

President Obama: “ISIL is not Islamic. No religion condones the killing of innocents”

he time of the Uman pilgrimage is upon us, and we dare not ignore the opportunity to highlight the danger.

Healing requires that the victim be validated for being harmed and the guilty assume responsibility.

During the war, not once was Hashem’s name mentioned to the nation by Israel’s PM or gov’t officials

How many illegal Arab structures are there in the city? Why are they not being destroyed?

We did not win the war in Gaza because we are still captive to the concept of the 2 state solution.

Trapped in a false notion of power, America will lose the battle in the same way Israel now loses.

It’s a cliché, but nonetheless true that 9/11 changed my life. There is evil in the world. Our grandparents were right.

His many articles on education showed great insight into the problems facing Jewish teachers in a changing student environment.

We cannot forget Secretary Kerry’s obsessive and relentless focus on the Middle East peace process.

More Articles from Rabbi Eliyahu Safran
Eisenstock-082914

But the world is forever challenging our Jewish principle and our practices.

What defines kana’ut these days? Throwing rocks at passing cars on Shabbos? Burning an Israeli flag on Yom Ha’Atzmaut?

One who may leave his wife an agunah is not included in the general rule that we may not imprison on Shabbos.

“Fulfill my requests for good, grant my request, be mindful of us for deliverance and compassion…remember us for a good, long life…give us bread to eat, clothes to wear…”

Too often, as parents and teachers, we think it means talking at our children, delivering to them good and worthy content that they should simply hear and assimilate into their minds and hearts.

I was singing, dancing, jumping and, sweating. Just joy and happiness. One child on my shoulders after another. What happiness! And then, the little boy on my shoulders – he could not have been older than six – began to cry.

The only way for children to find a way back to the path is through parental love and understanding.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/front-page/god-loves-our-lost-children-and-so-must-we/2014/01/29/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: