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August 2, 2014 / 6 Av, 5774
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The Gift Of Unity


But the story doesn’t quite end there. That afternoon I gave my Torah shiur and our new chassidic friends all joined us. My heart burst with gratitude. All my pain, all my discomfort, left me. I had no difficulty standing for over an hour.

“Thank you Hashem, for this magical gift,” I whispered again and again. How awesome, that at this first Shabbos gathering following my surgery, Hashem granted me the zechus to teach Torah to our people, who coalesced into one. This very thought took me back to Mt. Sinai, when G-d gave us His Torah and we stood in His presence as “one man with one heart.”

How wondrous that at this very first Shabbos event following my agonizing time, I was able to share Torah with people who represented the majestic panorama of Am Yisrael.

In these terrifying times we must bear in mind that our greatest powerhouse of protection and blessing is achdus – unity among Jews. There is nothing more precious to Hashem than seeing His children united.

Let us not forget that in the generation of Dovid HaMelech the people were meticulous in their observance of mitzvos, but just the same they were doomed and failed in battle.

On the other hand, evil King Achav, an idol worshiper, was granted success. What was the secret behind this failure and victory? Despite its dedication to mitzvos, the generation of Dovid was fragmented by divisiveness and jealousy. On the other hand, Achav’s generation, despite its idolatry, was united by brotherly love – and in front of the Throne of Hashem, that unity outweighs all else.

Why can’t we learn that simple lesson? Thousands of years have passed since the destruction of our Temple – a cataclysm caused by jealousy and hatred – and we have yet to learn the simple truth that Ahavat Yisrael is the most precious gift we can offer our Heavenly Father.

It is a gift that guarantees our protection from all evil and suffering. How simple – and yet so hard.

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