Monday, June 27, 2011

Happy for Others

How is it possible to be happy for someone else when they experience a joyous time in their lives and you are left waiting and watching?

Such a situation comes up all the time - when someone gets a job and you are still looking for one, when someone gets into a school/seminary/college that you wanted to get into, when a friend gets engaged before you - it's a challenge many of us experience on some level.

It boils down to learning how to deal with disappointment on your end while at the same time being happy, really happy for your friend's good fortune.

The first thing to remind yourself, although you know this in your sleep, is that Hashem runs the world and He knows what is best for you. He does everything not just for a reason, but for a good reason! You don't know why He decided that it's best for your friend to get into that school, to get that job or to get that guy - all before you but He knows why it's best!

There's a mashal you may have heard about a tapestry - when someone is sewing it, if you look from the bottom, it looks like a big mess and you can't see or understand the beauty of the big picture. All you'll see are knots and a mixture of colorful strings hanging around. However, if you sit up on top, you'll get to see a beautiful picture with details you never would have imagined when looking from below.

I think the nimshal is pretty clear. When we are down here on this world, we don't understand the seemingly unclear, messy threads that are hanging from up above. But after 120 years, when I person goes up there, they can see with 100% clarity the beauty in the tapestry Hashem has sown!

Another thing to keep in mind is that someone else's good fortune will not in any way take away from the good you are going to have when your time comes. You will get to experience that joy and happiness when Hashem decides the time is right for you. Everyone has their time and everyone has their yeshuah that is going to come for them!

The job your friend got is perfect for her and even if you think you could have gotten it or would have gotten accepted if not for her, it's not true! If you would have gotten that job, it may not have worked out best for you - the traveling, the coworkers, the environment, your relationship with the boss, your schedule or whatever else it may be. Hashem has His plans and He has a reason why He made it that she got the job and not you. But this does not take away from your good and your chance - you will get something that's good for you! Just keep davening!!

That school/college/seminary was obviously not meant to work out for you because had you gone there, you would not be the person you are a few years later. You may have learned things differently or come out with different hashkafos had you gone there. You wouldn't have made the friends you have today had you gone there - because Hashem put you in this specific place (whether it's a school/college or seminary) so that you could get to know people who you can form relationships with that will be a benefit for you.

That guy your friend got engaged to is perfect for her. Even if it seems like he has some of the qualities you are looking for (which makes sense because friends tend to be similar so they may be looking for similar guys), he is her guy! There are little details and nuances of his personality and background that will make it work for the two of them to get married and it just wouldn't work out for you. Iy"h they will make a great couple together! Hashem has someone in mind for you and her simcha, her joy will not in any way take away from the joy you will experience when you get yours! In fact, it may be multiplied because of the things you have gone through to get to that point! When you wait for something and you finally get it, it's so much more precious and you appreciate it so much more!

Were you ever jealous of someone else's glasses prescription? Why not?

It's because this is something they need to be able to see better and if you wore their glasses, not only wouldn't it help you see more clearly, it may even cause you to bump into things because it's too strong or too weak for you. Your friend's glasses are made to fit her eyes so that when she puts them on in the morning, she can see with 20/20 vision. You don't need her glasses to see well! So of course there's no purpose in wanting them!

If only we were able to view life with such crystal clear vision, viewing other people's joys in true jealous-free lenses, the world would be a much happier place. May you always be able to feel real joy when you hear about other people's simchos and good fortune and may each of you be able to experience your own yeshuah soon!

And one more thing - don't stop davening! Thank Hashem for the goodness He bestowed upon your friends and keep asking Him to give you that which you have been davening for all this time!


  1. A relative of mine did not have children for several years. When I had my first child, I was a little bit nervous about how she'd feel. I shouldn't have worried. She was so genuinely happy for me. And she was the same way every time there was a new baby in the family. I loved her for it, and it taught me a lot.
    Your ideas for being able to come to that place are great, but it can't always be easy. When someone is able to be sincerely happy, and they make it look effortless, you know what a special person they must be.

  2. MW-wow, that takes strength! I am touched by your comment. It's true that it's not easy to be truly happy for someone else-especially when you are waiting for the same thing. It takes work, a lot of work, a lot of talking to yourself and drilling things into your head...and then when you are really able to feel the true happiness, that's when you feel good! Cuz it hurts when you can't be 100% happy for someone's all about fixing yourself and making yourself into a better person!

  3. deviory you are soooo right with what u shared! I feel like the message that you said that noone cold take away from your simcha is such an imp. point that many ppl dont realize!! your simcha will be exactly what hashem planned for you:)and noone and nothing can take that away from you!!! if yo will be happy for someone else hashem will reward that very very much!! like aharon hakohen when he saw moshe his younger brother being honored with the honor that he was supposed to get he was happy for him in his heart!!! hashem saw that he was happy and he ws rewarded soo gr8LY!! just sit down in a room and close your cell phone and close your music fr a few min. and really tell hashem how you feel HASHEM HEARS EVERY OUNCE OF PAIN IN YOUR HEART!!! AND HE WILL MAKE SURE THAT YOU WONT FEEL SUCH A STRONG PAIN!:)HASHM WILL SEND YOU GR8 FRIENDS TO BE THERE FOR YOU!!! DEVOIRY THANK YOU SOOO MUCH FOR BRINGING THIS UP TO OUR ATTENTION! YOU HVE SUCH WONDERFUL TOPICS!!

  4. No matter how much we thank HASHEM, it is never enough!

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  5. I love the analogy you made to being jealous of someone else's prescription glasses. It's an easy thing to remember in order to keep perspective.

  6. Beautifully written. I am so glad I found your blog. Just discovered it a few hours ago and cannot stop reading! Kol ha kavod to you for inspiring so many Yidden in such a heimische way.

  7. chaya sara-yes, it's hard and painful but there's comfort in knowing that Hashem knows what He's doing!!

    MC-that's true.

    corti-thanks, glad you liked it!

    Arlette-so glad to hear! I'm just curious how you find my blog? Keep reading and commenting!


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