Under what light are we to understand the tragedy that happened in Boro Park this week, when three children were killed?
I was waiting for that question. Under what light?! I’ll tell you. When you come to Olam Habah after a hundred and twenty years, you’ll ask Hakodosh Boruch Hu to explain it to you. How could I know? Did I know the people? I don’t know their history. Do you know their history? I don’t know anything about them.
I’ll tell you one little story, though. Not directly connected with this. A different story. But it’s important to get out of the habit of blaming Hashem. People are too busy pointing a finger at Hashem when they should be filling their minds with gratitude to Hashem. Once there was a girl – a young woman. And she was riding in a taxicab in Brooklyn. And the taxicab bumped into another car. And together they bumped into a telephone pole. And the pole fell on her and she died. Nebach, it killed that girl.
Now, I’m not capable of telling you anything but I’ll tell you something that happened with a girl. Maybe it was the same girl. I don’t want to say. Once there was a poor teacher and she was trying to make a living. You know that it’s not always easy making a living. So she was teaching a class of girls. And there were forty girls in the class. One of the girls in the back of the class mimicked the teacher’s voice. And she did it all the time. All the time! And the teacher was very much embarrassed. Very embarrassed. Very hurt. But what could she do? It’s her parnasah. So she kept quiet. She kept quiet but she was terribly hurt.
Now maybe this girl forgot about what she did. And maybe the teacher forgot about her pain. But Hakodosh Boruch Hu doesn’t forget. He might give you time to fix your mistake – to do teshuvah – but when you don’t, and instead you forget about it, He doesn’t forget. You hear that?! Hakodosh Boruch Hu doesn’t forget!
So we can’t explain anything. Look, we don’t know the people, so we’ll say that they were tzadikim gemurim. We don’t know, so that’s what we’ll have to say. They were tzadikim and Hashem has His reasons. That’s all. Finished. And when you come to the Next World at the age of a hundred and twenty, He’ll explain it to you better and you’ll understand more. But till then, you must know that He has His reasons.
I’ve been here many years and I have heard similar questions many times. These questions are asked here all the time. But nobody ever asked me, “Under what light should I view the fact that this week I was able to walk in the street with fully functioning legs?” All week long you walked without any difficulties! Or, “Under what light should I view the fact I was able to eat three meals yesterday? Or that my lungs were working all day long and I never even stopped once to thank Hashem?” These are the questions you should be asking yourself. So get busy training yourself to thank Hashem for all the good He’s giving you and that will go a long way towards answering your questions.
TAPE # 429 (September 1983)