The voice of the groom and the voice of the bride (Yirmiyahu 7:34)
For this week’s Divrei Simcha, I am going to do something I have never done before. Instead of writing about a verse in the Torah portion, I am going to write about a verse in the Haftarah. But, actually, the verse is not even in this week’s haftarah. The verse above is found in the haftarah for Parshas Tzav, but since this Shabbos is Shabbos HaGadol, we read a special, different Haftarah. So, I am quoting a verse from the haftarah that is meant for Parshas Tzav, even though it is not being read this year.
Why am I doing this? The reason is because the verse above is about weddings and last week I heard a great story from Rabbi Fischel Schachter that I would like to share.
In Eretz Yisrael, there was a young girl who was getting ready for her first day of kindergarten. But her first day was different than her classmates. The reason is because her mother was very sick and could not take her to school. Her older brother brought her to school. In the afternoon, she waited and waited for her mother to pick her up, but her mother never came. The teachers knew the story of this young girl’s family and they walked her home. When she got home, she sat on her front step and cried and cried.
At that moment, Rav Chaim Sonnenfeld, the Rav of Yerushaliyim was walking down the street. He saw the girl crying and asked her what was the problem. She said that all she wants is her mother to be able to walk her to school like everyone else. Rav Sonnenfeld comforted her and said, “I give you a blessing that your mother will walk you down to the chuppa at your wedding.”
The little girl did not really understand the blessing, but as she got older she remembered this incident and she began to understand the blessing she received from the Gadol. When she reached 16 or 17 years old, she began dating (which was the common age for women in this neighborhood to get married) but she rejected every offer. There were some very great men that she dated, but she did not like any of them. A few years passed and people began to question what was going on. Her younger siblings started getting married. Eventually, ten years later when she was around 27 years old, all of her siblings were married and then this woman found her perfect man and got married.
After sheva brachas (the first week of marriage), her mother passed away. The girl cried on her mother’s deathbed and said, “Mom. I could have gotten married many years ago, but I received a special blessing from a great Rabbi that you would walk me to my chuppa. I wanted to make sure that my siblings got the same. Therefore, I put off my marriage so you could be at their weddings also.”
Good Shabbos and Chag Sameach!
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