Sunday, November 6, 2011

Top 3 Reasons Why Sarah Laughed

by Devora Gila Berkowitz

Parshat Vayeira


Mamre Plains -- Three men visited Avraham Avinu and Sarah Imeinu in the scorching heat of the afternoon yesterday. Some neighbors claim that the men are, in fact, angels in the form of humans sent to deliver an important message to the patriachal couple. The visitors claim that Sarah will become the world's oldest first-time mother next year at the record age of 99; her husband will be a ripe one-hundred. The men remain anonymous.

When asked about her reaction to the news, Ms. Imeinu commented, "I just had to laugh."

Why does Sarah laugh? There are two major opinions on this. Some say she doubted Hashem's ability to perform a miracle. Others, such as the Kotzker, suggest that her laughter was a joyful one.

I'd like to offer a third view. Let's suspend the idea of laughter as an aspect of capability; whether she was capable of bearing a child, or whether Hashem was capable of performing a miracle.

Let's instead focus on the prayers around the issue. Have you ever wished for something, then gave up on it, only to see it come true later on? Years of Sarah's praying for a child were perhaps followed by decades in which those prayers were humbly abandoned. Maybe the laughter is in response to those long-forgotten prayers finally being answered. It's a feeling that G-d acknowledges her. It's that moment of  "ah-hah, now I understand why I had to go through all of that suffering" -- a moment of connection between her original prayers and her acceptance of G-d's will for the years that she did not have children.

Try this exercise: Think of something you've prayed for that you're still waiting to see become a reality. Practice accepting that until now, it has been G-d's will to not bring that desire yet into the world. Understand that if you feel this yearning deep in your soul, it's G-d's desire too. Have emunah that G-d will manifest this desire in the right time.

1 comment:

  1. This level of emuna is so hard to really do truthfully but so important!!! and really the only way to go!!!
    great post!!