A Leap of Faith
Sometimes in life we have to take a leap of faith. When the Children of Israel left Egypt, they came to the Red Sea and could go no further. At this point it was Nachshon who led the way. He walked into the sea until it reached his nose and we were all rewarded by his show of faith and the waters parted. The Children of Israel crossed in safety and began their journey to the Promised Land.
Nonetheless, along with leaping, we need to acknowledge that we are responsible for our own actions. By doing so, we ourselves take responsibility for our own future. It is one thing to trust that everything will work out for the best, but along with that assumption, we have to create a plan of action to get us to where we want to be.
A dream is just a wish without a plan. Once we have a plan then our wish has power, it becomes a goal. A goal by definition is something that we can actually work towards.
This sounds contraindicative to making a leap of faith, yet every time we take a step towards our goal we are closer to our dreams. We are taught in Judaism to have faith in G-d and even on Mount Sinai, the Children of Israel said “naaseh ve nishmah - we will do then we will understand”. The blind acceptance of the Torah without the knowledge to back up that decision, was a sign of commitment to G-d. Yet it’s important that we remember, G-d had just revealed Himself in the miraculous events leading up to the exodus from slavery. To have faith in a higher power at that point was less a leap of faith and more a decision based on very recent events.
Judaism teaches that we are not given reasons for everything that happens, yet we have a choice about how we respond. The most important thing to remember is that G-d gave us free choice, it is up to us how we act and therefore it is up to us, where we find ourselves along life’s journey.
It is an extremely hard balance, having faith in what you want to see happen, and yet preparing for alternatives. Sometimes things are out of our control and however much we want something to happen, circumstances prevent it. That’s when the backup plan comes into play. By giving us free will, G-d ensures that we have the understanding of more than one outcome and can plan accordingly.
Personally, I believe in leaping. Know what you want and put your eggs in the basket. But prepare, line the basket carefully so if something does happen, not all of your eggs are broken. Some may break, others may crack, but you will still have some whole eggs.
Just like our faith. Believe in G-d, know there is a Higher Power, even if we don’t get what we want right away. We are not told all the reasons, but if our eggs are our faith, we can hold them tight. Know that sometimes our faith is in a fragile basket, sometimes our faith can even seem fractured. But just as an egg in Judaism represents the circle of life, so too can this basket of eggs represent our faith.
Our faith in G-d is the synonymous with the circle of life.
Take your leap, go for what you want, and understand that whatever the conclusion, this too is part of your journey. Prepare for all outcomes but don’t lose your faith in the direction you are heading. Believing in yourself and trusting in G-d is the perfect synthesis for a future you can work towards.
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