How to see G-d in everything. * The advantage of worldly people over secluded scholars. * The service of teshuva from perceiving Divine Providence. * On the Hayom Yom entry for 7 Tishrei.
Have you ever wondered how to find G-d in your daily life? How to connect with Him in every moment, every situation, every challenge? How to see His hand guiding you, caring for you, loving you?
The Hayom Yom entry for 7 Tishrei gives us a powerful insight into this question. It quotes the second Chabad Rebbe, Rabbi Dovber Schneuri, also known as the Mitteler Rebbe, who taught that "people of the world have an advantage over secluded scholars, in that the former can witness actual manifestations of G-dliness." What does this mean? How can being involved in worldly matters help us see G-d more than being immersed in Torah study?
The answer lies in the concept of hashgacha p'ratit, or particular Divine Providence. This means that G-d is not only the Creator and Sustainer of the universe, but also the Director and Supervisor of every detail that happens within it. Nothing is random, nothing is coincidental, nothing is insignificant. Everything has a purpose, a meaning, a message from G-d.
The Mitteler Rebbe explains that this is the essence of the verse "In all your ways, know Him." This means that we should not only acknowledge G-d in our prayers and mitzvot, but also in our mundane activities and interactions. We should not only serve G-d with our souls and minds, but also with our bodies and hearts. We should not only seek G-d in the holy and spiritual realms, but also in the profane and material ones.
This is the advantage of businessmen over secluded scholars. The former have more opportunities to see G-d's Providence in action, to witness His miracles and wonders, to feel His presence and love. The latter may be more knowledgeable and refined, but they may also be more detached and isolated from the reality of G-d's involvement in the world.
But how can we develop this awareness of G-d's Providence? How can we train ourselves to see Him in everything? The Hayom Yom entry tells us that this is a form of teshuva, or repentance. Teshuva means returning to G-d and aligning our will with His. It involves recognizing our mistakes, feeling remorse, resolving not to repeat them, and asking for forgiveness.
But teshuva also means seeing G-d's goodness and kindness in everything that happens to us, even if it seems negative or painful. It means thanking Him for all His blessings and gifts, even if they are hidden or disguised. It means trusting Him with all our hearts and souls, even if we don't understand His ways or plans.
This is how we can know Him in all our ways. This is how we can see Him in everything.
But what is the benefit of this awareness? What does it do for us? How does it change us?
The answer is that it transforms us into better people, better Jews, better servants of G-d. It makes us more humble, more grateful, more faithful. It makes us more joyful, more peaceful, more loving. It makes us more connected to G-d, to ourselves, to others.
And ultimately, it brings us closer to Moshiach, the ultimate redeemer who will reveal G-d's glory and goodness to the whole world.
So let us practice this awareness of G-d's Providence every day. Let us look for His hand in everything that happens to us and around us. Let us know Him in all our ways.
And let us see Him in everything.