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Thought for the Day: Ein Puranos Bah l'Olam Ele Bishvil Yisrael

We are used to thinking of the this ma'amar Chazal in a negative way.  When we see disasters in the news, our first reaction is (supposed to be), "Whoa!  Thank you, HaShem, for that warning shot across the bow.  I better take inventory and make any necessary mid-course corrections."  That is, disasters happen to goyim as a warning to us.  I never thought of it in a positive light until a couple of days ago.

My wife and I are in San Francisco to celebrate with my daughter and her husband the birth of a son.  Of course, we had to wait to make reservations until he was born (or nearly so) because babies don't always listen to the doctor about due dates.  My new grandson was no exception, coming 10 day "late" (ie, on time, but 10 days after the doctor's opinion).  Tickets were expensive, so I pricelined them... we save something like $300.00, but we stuck on a 7:00AM flight Thursday morning (yesterday).  It meant not davening with my beloved vasikin minyan, missing k'rias hatorah, a scheduling difficulty for my wife and I trying to get there early enough for me to daven, but not so early that my poor wife was stuck staying up all night to pack, etc, etc.  What can one do?

Last Tuesday my wife told me we had a funny message on the answering machine.  United had called to tell us that due to mechanical difficulties, our 7:00AM flight had been cancelled and we had been rebooked to a 12:14PM flight the same day!  In 30 years (or more) of flying, I've never heard of mechanical difficulties cancelling a flight two days in the future; usually it get cancelled once you've been waiting at the airport or on the runway for several hours.  What a dream! I daven normally, had my chavrusa afterward, had a nice breakfast with my wife, we packed, and left for the airport relatively relaxed and refreshed.

My good friend Dovid Cohen said, "They could have saved themselves a lot of trouble and expense by just giving you the right flight in the first place."  (Side note: don't mess with regular vasikin goers; HaShem likes us.)  Another friend, Paul Pinkus, pointed out that there was an additional benefit to the way it happened: I got to see yad HaShem and appreciate His Kindnesses even more.  I have to add, I also got the benefit of experiencing once again what good friends I have; especially the palpable bitachon of everyone at the vasikin minyan that always sees world events great and small as being bishvil yisrael.


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