20 Av 5781 / Thursday, July 29, 2021 | Torah Reading: Eikev
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Glad to Have MS

There is a choice that each one of us has to make for ourselves; the repercussions of refusing to use your Emuna tool is a sure path to failure and sorrow and fear...


More than three months have passed since I began thanking Hashem for the gift of multiple sclerosis. I have gone through tears, laughter, unexplained joy, heartfelt repentance, and am left with a long list of reasons I am grateful for this specific ailment.


This outrageous confession is coming after missing all celebrations at my synagogue for the holiday of Shavuos. Not only that, it was a three day Holiday, my favorite. What, you might ask, could make this debilitating disease a welcome intruder and not a spoiler to my joy? Honestly, it didn’t have to be this disease, only one which afforded me great amounts of alone time to comb through each tender section still calling for emotional healing, to then repent, and learn gratitude.  It would also have to provide so many others the opportunity to assist me, thereby elevating their own souls.


It would have to be a disease which would leave my brain intact, my body able enough to transport me to synagogue and back, learn Torah and hold the kindling flame craving human interaction. This seems a tall order to fill. My brain actively seeking, my body, forcing it to recognize the inconsequential nature of most human activity. The drama of human interaction falls easily away. The finer moments of life’s tender and most intimate communications with others are mostly replaced by intimacy with Hashem. Human transactions must be at the highest level of respect and acknowledgment of self and others to be part of the equation.


This life leaves no room for any distance between me and prayer or me and Hashem. I am as anxious for His Comfort as I am for my next breath. Sometimes I fall away and the yetzer hara (evil inclination) convinces me Hashem is not close. When I believe that, my fear of the disease and the safety and continuity of my care becomes overwhelming.


Only the study and practice of Emuna and personal prayer are strong enough to leave my wits fully intact with a smile on my face and in my heart. When they go away, life becomes one beset by illness and lack. What I need becomes greater than what I know I have already. It becomes greater than any potentially future goodness that may befall.


Having recently survived a fall from knowing the grace of Hashem, I am more keenly aware of the difference between my using Emuna and times when I forget, or simply refuse to believe this is true.


My original statement saying that I am glad to have MS must be tempered with the knowledge that having MS brought me to the wonders of an Emuna life. Without it, I have no answers. But with Emuna, every question is satisfied.


Because I am so close to it, I know this is a choice that each one of us has to make for ourselves. The repercussions of refusing to use your Emuna tool is a sure path to failure and sorrow and fear.


I started thinking about feedback from my last article. How do I remember to have Emuna, while in the thick of this life? I returned to the place my healing may have started. The six constant mitzvot widened my thoughts of Hashem enough, Emuna was simply the next step.


It’s not easy to remember to say thank you to Hashem when the world is crashing down around you. It’s only necessary.


Put signs on the wall, tape them to your refrigerator, paste them upon your mirrors – look at your signs when you don’t need to. Make them like affirmations. I have one on my mirror that I received from Emuna Outreach, which says, “Good morning, this is G – D, I will be handling all your problems today, I will not need your help, have a nice day.”


Surround yourself before the problem of needing to remember hits you. Make yourself strong with thoughts of Emuna before they need to be strong. Ask Hashem to help you remember Emuna when you most need it and every other time.


Use the mezuzas on your door posts to remind you Hashem is responsible for everything, it is all good, and everything has a purpose.


It wasn’t easy starting to say "Thank You". The person I am now is not the person I was before I started. Be prepared for changes to happen. Expect miracles, expect the best for your life. It all starts with thank you.

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  3 Talkbacks for this article    See all talkbacks  
  Thank you for writing this
Rivka7/3/2015 4:53:51 AM
  and your tefilla can bring Mashia
yehuda6/30/2015 6:55:31 AM
  Have MS and am showered with Emuna too
Orit Esther Riter6/22/2015 10:34:32 PM

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