Providence in the West | Opinion – South Florida Sun Sentinel

Posted By on August 12, 2022

Bob Rosenthal and his older brother Leonard were eager to get off the train in Tucson, AZ to stretch their legs and purchase a cold drink. They had left Ft. Worth, Texas over twenty-four hours prior on their way to California for much needed R&R after their service in the military during WWII. Bob and Leonard were Texas born and this would be their first trip to the West Coast.

Holding their cokes, they made their way back to the tracks to reboard their train car. They were horrified to see that it was gone! Their jackets, luggage, and belongings were on their way to Los Angeles and they were stranded in Tucson with nothing! There was no way to continue their journey empty-handed they would have to turn back. Distraught and disappointed, they rented a hotel room for the night, awaiting the next train heading east to Ft. Worth.

Rabbi Aaron Moscovitz watched his wife, Ethel, put the final touches on her Shabbat dinner as he wished her Good Shabbos before walking to their Tucson synagogue for Friday night services. As Rabbi Moscovitz opened his Siddur to find the place, the synagogue door opened and two young men walked tentatively inside. They explained their predicament stranded in town after missing their train West and Aaron invited them to join his family for Shabbat dinner. The arrival of two young men caused quite a stir in the Moscovitz house especially for their teenage daughters, Judy and Ilene. Eligible Jewish men were hard to come by in Arizona!

By the end of Shabbat dinner, Leonard and Bobs troubles were forgotten as they delighted in the company of their new friends. Bob began a long distance courtship with Judy and two years later in 1948, they were married in Tucson, Arizona.

Their love story had a propitious beginning and thank G-d, a blessed continuation as they enjoyed seventy-eight years of marriage before Judy passed away in June of this year in Boynton Beach. We were privileged to celebrate Judy & Bobs 77th anniversary at a Kiddush at Chabad of South Palm Beach and we were deeply moved by the providence that brought them together and the deep love that joined them for so long.

How marvelous are the ways of G-d. The stranded Rosenthal boys were the answer to the Moscovitzes prayers. It is not every day that we glimpse the marvelous ways of Divine providence, seeing the silver lining in the gray clouds.

How often do we find ourselves stalled in traffic, on line, or on the phone? If we train ourselves to see the opportunity in every interaction, we can recognize that we are planted with precision, and not randomly stuck. We can make the most of opportunities we did not anticipate by sharing love, Yiddishkeit, or even a throat lozenge.

In 1967, the Lubavitch womens annual conference was held in Detroit. At the successful conclusion of the gathering, the women went to the airport where they found out that all air travel had been suspended because of bad weather and that none of them would be able to fly home. This was a logistical nightmare for the women in Detroit and more importantly, for their families back home.

A convention organizer reached out to the office of the Lubavitcher Rebbe informing him that all the women were stuck in the Detroit airport because of a blizzard. The Rebbes secretary responded to the women saying that the Rebbe did not understand the word stuck. As they attempted to explain the definition of the word the secretary responded, The Rebbe knows what stuck means. The Rebbe is saying that a Jew is never stuck. The women understood the challenge in the message and they made sure to make their time count.

Being stuck is feeling powerless, giving up personal agency, and losing precious time. When I recognize that everything happens with Divine will, I realize that I am precisely planted in this unique situation. How can I make the most of it? What opportunities present themselves in this scenario that I did not anticipate? When faced with a similar obstacle, you too can decide if you will be stuck or if you will be planted! I so hope youll bloom.

ShainaStolik is the Rebbetzin at Chabad of South Palm Beach, 224 S. Ocean Blvd., Lantana.

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Providence in the West | Opinion - South Florida Sun Sentinel

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