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Thought for the Day: No, You Really Don't Know Why That Happened

Everyone loves hashgacha pratis stories, and I am no exception.  I have a great one for today.  On fridays, especially during the winter, I ride my bike only to the train station (a bit over two miles) and then ride the train into work.  It takes about an hour either way, but I save time changing in and out of bike clothes and showering when I get home.  I also get to learn on the train, and I figure that into my weekly learning schedule for goal setting.  So I got on my bike this morning with just my regular clothes (a bit chilly this morning, but only for 2 miles) and my regular shoes (not very good for biking since they have a soft sole, but only for 2 miles) and rode the the train.  Baruch HaShem, there was an open spot at the bike rack in the station.  I got my bike parked, stowed my helmet, took off my gloves, and reached down to get my lock of the holder on the frame.  One problem: holder is empty; lock is missing.  I have a vague memory of setting the lock down on the bike rack at work the night before while getting my bike off the rack.  Unfortunately have no memory of picking it back up and putting it in the holder on the frame.  No problem, I think, I'll just work from home.  One problem: I had left my computer at work since the weather report was favorable.  Ok; nothing to do at this point but ride downtown.  In my regular clothes (brrr) wearing my regular shoes (ouch).  I got to work on time, found my lock, took a shower, and plan to head home at the regular time.

Where's the hashgacha, you are asking.  Umm.... every moment of it.  Whenever I start thinking about why this or that has happened, I think back to Mordechai.  At the height of tension in the Purim story -- when Esther and Mordechai are discussing whether Esther should go to the king or not -- Mordechai says, "And who knows?  Maybe that's why you were chosen to be queen!"  MAYBE!?!  Are you kidding me?  A tznius bais yaakov girl, niece of the rabbi who won't bow down to Haman, is chosen to be the queen of one of history's most disgusting characters and just happens to be there when the Jewish nation desperately needs a direct line to the king; and you are saying "maybe"??  Mordechai is practically a prophet and has connected all the dots from the feast many years earlier to the current crises; and he says "maybe"?  Of course, that is precisely why Mordechai and Esther recorded that conversation in the megilla -- to tell us for all time: no, you don't know what is going on.  HaShem runs the world (HRTW, as my wife likes to say).  Our job is not to dwell on why this or that may have happened; our job is to acknowledge HRTW every moment, and deal with it.

R' Ezriel Tauber, shlita, puts it very nicely.  "Think about the last ten years.  How much went as you expected?  Right, almost none of it.  So why do you expect the next ten years to be any different?"  I only have one slight emendation: how about the last 10 minutes?


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