28 Kislev 5782 / Thursday, December 02, 2021 | Torah Reading: Mikeitz
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My New Job, or Shabbos    

My New Job, or Shabbos

When her new boss tried to get her fired, Hashem stepped in and gave the boss a taste of her own medicine...


As I pressed the elevator button after my big interview, Mary walked up to me. “I am rooting for you!” she said, “I think you’ll make a great addition to our team.” 



Fast forward a few weeks. Mary, now my new boss, is no longer rooting for me. From the day that I finally had to admit that I was a Shabbat observant Jew and I would need to change my work schedule in order to work extra during the weekdays in order to leave earlier on Friday afternoon (and it became apparent that my skirts weren’t just part of the business suit, but a permanent fixture), Mary had been trying valiantly to get me fired.  



She tried everything. She hated my work and insisted that I never submitted anything by the deadline. Of course, I did submit it by the deadline; but since she didnt like it, she considered it not finished, and therefore late.  



The worst part of it all was that she kept giving me Friday deadlines. I killed myself to have everything ready on Thursday so that I wouldn’t risk being pressured on Friday. No matter what I did, she kept finagling situations to try to force me to stay late on Friday afternoon in order to finish. I didn’t budge – I left on time, leaving her unfinished demands behind. 



I knew that I was in deep trouble. begged Hashem for good income and Divine Assistance. It had taken long months to find this job, and being at the beginning of my career, it was problematic for me to leave yet another job quickly, especially if it meant being unemployed in the meantime.  



Hashem sent me my salvation in the form of Mary’s boss, who called me into his office. Although he didn’t quite call it “anti-Semitism,” he explained that “the management” realized that Mary was out to get me and wanted to give me a fighting chance. I was also given an opportunity to explain my side of the story. This meeting in and of itself was a huge miracle. Since when does anyone care about a newbie when a long time, trusted staff member says her work is sub-par?! 



So, I secretly began forwarding him the email conversations between myself and Mary, as well as copies of my work, as directed. Within a short while, the big boss called me in again and explained that the owners decided that my work was great, but they didn’t want to fire Mary eitherObviously, we couldn’t work together. So, I was going to be moved to a different department, where I would be able to do the same job but with a different boss, and even better, on a different floor where I wouldn’t run into her so often eitherThe big move was to happen within two weeks, in order to give me time to wrap up the projects I was already working on. 



Things culminated that Friday morning. One of my wrap-up tasks was writing the monthly client newsletter. I had already re-written it a few times, since as I mentioned, she was never happy with anything I did. Now, she came back to me again with an entire host of changes, which would require hours upon hours to finish. Not only that, but the email came with a harsh deadlineThis work is finished today, or else! pushed back the tears, forwarded it to Mary’s boss, and started working. 



The problem was that it was Friday morning, about 11AM; I needed to leave at 3:00PM in order to just make it home in time for winter Shabbos candle lighting. Plus, Fridays I took a long lunch in order to join a Lunch-and-Learn Torah portion class across the street that I had been attending since I started working at my first job years before. I never missed it, and it was one of the highlights of my week. For me, there was no choice: I was going to the class and going home on time no matter what 



By 11:30AM, I was back in the big boss’ office. He explained that this situation had gone too far, and that the big move to the new department was happening nowEven more, he had decided to give her a taste of her own medicine. She had already been sent an email stating that her ideas were absolutely wonderful, but I was no longer working on the project. She was now ordered to do everything she told me to do, and her deadline was the same – today, no matter how long it took! In order to avoid her inevitable fury and the fallout of the rest of the staff, I was to grab my stufftake it to my new desk, and then take the rest of the day off, paid! 



By now it was twelve o’clock - time to head off to the class! When I arrived, I told the story to my friends while we munched on our kosher lunch before the class startedrelieved and extremely grateful to Hashem. I later heard that Mary had to stay until after 8PM to finish the work. 



The new department ended up being one big blessing. I had another fantastic manager, and quickly stepped into a more senior position, which I remained in until the entire department was laid off. Even that was for the best; it became a major stepping stone to making Aliyah just a few months later. To this day, I still use the skills I learned in that job to disseminate the teachings of Rabbi Arush in English. 



I also experienced a rule that I had only heard about previously: You never lose from keeping Shabbos! 



This is a completely true story and none of the details have been changed. 




Rachel Avrahami grew up in Los Angeles, CA, USA in a far off valley where she was one of only a handful of Jews in a public high school of thousands. She found Hashem in the urban jungle of university. Rachel was privileged to read one of the first copies of The Garden of Emuna in English, and the rest, as they say, is history. She made Aliyah and immediately began working at Breslev Israel. 

Rachel is now the Editor of Breslev Israel's English website. She welcomes questions and comments to her email: rachel.avrahami@breslev.co.il.




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