Over the years, many people have asked me, “Shmuel, I’d love to live in Israel, but what about my job? What about the kids in school? How do I know I’ll be happy with my new neighborhood? Will I adjust to the different medical system? How will I manage?” To all these questions, I have the same answer: “Hashem speaks Hebrew!” Huh? Let me explain what I mean.
We are a people of action. The sea didn’t split until Nachshon jumped in. The miracle of Purim began immediately after Mordechai and Esther devised their plan and put it into action. The city of Jerusalem was liberated in 1967 – along with Yehuda, Shomron, the Jordan Valley, and the Golan Heights – after the IDF bravely attacked seven (yes, seven!) Arab armies. However, all these things would have never succeeded had the Jewish Nation not put their faith in Hashem, our King. And when I write “faith,” I don’t mean what you think.
A Jew must live his or her life with such emunah – such faith in the One Above – that he or she is willing to die for it. This is not the simple emunah that we have when keeping Shabbos, wearing t’filin each morning, or making sure our food is kosher. The emunah I am referring to is the rock-solid belief that a Jew must do what is expected of him or her – and that this Jew is prepared to see that action through with uncompromising m’sirus nefesh (self-sacrifice). Will the action succeed? We don’t know; but we are prepared for any outcome!
Do you want to know the secret ingredient that will help make it happen? Talk to Hashem and beg, plead, and cry to Him. Tell Him what you’re doing and why you’re doing it. Tell Him about your big house in Jamaica Estates, your great job on Long Island, your amazing doctors, and your comfortable life. Then tell Him that you’re giving this up to join am Yisrael in Eretz Yisrael. “If this is what you want from me, Hashem (and it is!), then I am doing it – no matter what – but I need Your help. Help me find a good neighborhood to raise my family, a job that will pay the bills and allow me time to study Your Holy Torah, and a life that is filled with meaning and purpose.”
When I tell this to religious Jews across the globe, they often look at me like I fell from outer space. “That’s how it works?” they ask. And I tell them, “YES! That’s exactly how it works!” Think about the things you have now: your house, your job, your spouse – who gave them to you? Think about your good life: Everything you have at this moment is from Avinu Malkeinu – our Father in Heaven. He gave them to you in Queens, and He can give them to you in Jerusalem or Ra’anana as well… because Hashem speaks Hebrew!
You thought Hashem just helps in Kew Gardens Hills, Great Neck, and Woodmere? That new car you bought, the stock investment that’s up 40%, and the nachas you have from your children are all from Hashem. Yes, you did serious actions – which the Torah requires – but the success is only from Hashem. That is the attitude you need to have when you call Nefesh B’Nefesh. You will do the actions. You will fill out the paperwork. You will search for amazing yeshivos for your children. You will look for a new job and a great community to live… and you will daven to Hashem for success in all these endeavors… and He will help you because to Hashem, helping a Yid who is leaving Egypt – whoops, I mean America – is something He has promised to do: “You shall possess the Land and you shall settle in it, for to you have I given the Land to possess it” (BaMidbar 33:53) and “Hashem, your G-d, is bringing you to a good Land… a Land where you will eat bread without poverty…You will eat and you will be satisfied and bless Hashem, your G-d, for the good Land that He gave you” (D’varim 8:7-10 – translations by ArtScroll).
Dearest friends: You need to take that first step to show yourself – and Hashem – that you are serious. You’re going to make this happen! No turning back, no failing, and no second-guessing. This is going to work because you have the Three Ps: Planning, Preparation, and Prayer. In addition to that, you have the m’sirus nefesh (self-sacrifice) to do what it takes to succeed and, most of all, you have Hashem on your side helping you in Eretz Yisrael! Yes, the language may be hard for you, but remember: Hashem speaks Hebrew!
Shmuel Sackett is a 100% product of Queens. He was born in Middle Village and moved to KGH shortly before his bar-mitzvah. He graduated from YCQ (1975) and YHSQ (1979). He was Havurat Yisrael’s first Youth Director (4 years) and started the first 2 NCSY chapters in Queens. Shmuel made aliyah in 1990 and co-founded Manhigut Yehudit, together with Moshe Feiglin. His website is www.JewishIsrael.org Sackett is married with 6 children and 4 grandchildren. He lives in Herziliya Pituach.