Friday, May 28, 2010


Only works in fire fox

Erev Shabbos Kodesh Parshas Beha’aloscha– Avos perek 2

15 Sivan 5770/ May 28, 2010

The following thoughts were written in honor of the kehilla’s celebration of -

The 50th wedding anniversary of Sy and Sandy Freidbaum

The 25th anniversary of Nathan and Stacy Losman

The 50th anniversary of Jerry and Shelia Wolfset

When I was in Eretz Yisroel a few weeks ago, I spent the entire Erev Shabbos in the bustling neighborhoods of Meah Shearim and Geulah. I love walking through those areas, shopping the many sefarim and Judaica stores, and watching the impatient crowds. But nothing compares to Erev Shabbos when the masses come to do their Shabbos shopping.

For lunch my brother Yaakov and I met up with a few friends from camp in a pizza shop. Our lunch mates were all yeshiva bochurim, learning in local yeshivas. With my white shirt and black pants I blended in with them.

While we were eating, a tzedakah collector made his way through the little restaurant. When I handed him a dollar his eyes lit up and he blessed me, "יזכה לזווג הגון" – that I merit finding a good marriage partner. I replied that I didn’t think my wife would be very happy with that blessing and I had to discuss it with her and my children. He laughed and tapped my arm lightly and exclaimed, יזכה לכל טוב" – May you merit all good things.”

It was a cute story and it reminded me of a lesson that I learned when I was first married. One must merit finding a good marriage partner throughout his married life. In other words, one must pray that his marriage be elevated and peaceful and that (s)he find favor in the eyes of his (her) spouse throughout their lives.

In the Grace after Meals we ask G-d that we merit to, “find favor and good understanding in the eyes of G-d and man.” Being able to find favor in the eyes of others (not to mention G-d) is one of the greatest blessings. Sometimes a person can do everything right but for some inexplicable reason is unable to win the grace of others, including an employer or spouse. Therefore we pray that we indeed find favor in the hearts of others.

The Mashgiach, Rabbi Mordechai Finkleman related in the name of his rebbe, Rabbi Moshe Wolfson, that it is of special significance to recite Psalm 121 just before one recites the verse “Yehyi l’ratzon” and takes three steps back to conclude his personal Shemoneh Esrei prayers. The Psalm, begins with the words, “I lift my eyes to the mountains; whence will come'עזרי' ? 'עזרי' comes from G-d, the Maker of heaven and earth.” [Although the word ‘Ezri’ literally means “My help” it can also refer to “my helpmate”, i.e. one’s spouse. See Bereishis 2:18 where Chava is referred to as the ‘Ezer’ of Adam.] It is worthy of the extra minute to recite that psalm, bearing in mind that one is praying for a wonderful marriage of mutual friendship, respect, and love.

So no matter how many years G-d has blessed a person to be married, (s)he always needs the continual blessing that (s)he merit a good marriage partner. And of course the first step in finding a good marriage partner is trying to be one yourself.

Shabbat Shalom & Good Shabbos,

R’ Dani and Chani Staum