Life is full of tests (just in case you hadn’t noticed!). When referring to our great-grandfather Avraham, we are told that he also went through tests, ten of them and overcame them all. Why is this aspect of Avraham so important and, in general, how can we get a better perspective on life’s tests?
There are many stories of Jews in the Concentration Camps mocking their Nazi captors. In the most horrific of situations, the Jews would sing and dance before the enemy. When asked by the Nazi’s why they were celebrating, the Jews would respond, that B”H we are the oppressed and not the oppressors.
Life’s tests can be sources of great anger and frustration or they can be springboards to greatness. The past few weeks we once again have seen what people can look like who, in the face of life’s challenges, respond with brutality and violence.
How incredibly fortunate are we to be the descendants of Avraham, who was the father of tests. He was the first person who took full responsibility for his challenges and stopped the downward cycle of blaming.
I don’t want to minimize or be insensitive to the seriousness of the tests that many people go through (Hashem should protect us from hardships). Even so, the stories of Avraham and all of the Avos teach us that the very tests that can make us bitter can be seen as a privilege and an opportunity for growth. May we rise to our challenges and may we be uplifted by them.
Have a wonderful Shabbos.
Written By: R Dovid Charlop

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