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The Angel at Starbucks

Friday, 7 October, 2016 - 8:44 am

By: Rabbi Eliyahu Schusterman

Do you ever stop and wonder about the tens if not hundreds of people you bump into or interact with on a given day? The bagger at the supermarket, the mailman, a customer service representative, the email spammer and the many more human beings we interact with consciously or subconsciously every day.

According to the teachings of the Ba’al Shem Tov, each of these interactions are divinely orchestrated. There is a reason and purpose for each of these interactions. No we are not always fortunate to see or know the reason, but a reason there is or the interaction wouldn’t have happened.

Sometimes we are fortunate to see the hand of G-d in a given interaction that sheds light and reinforces our belief about the other interactions. Like the other day, when I was having a rough morning. (Yes, I am one of those people who actually sometimes have a rough morning.) Looking at the challenges (yes, relatively small ones compared to some of the challenges people around me are experiencing, but these are my challenges) around me, I was questioning it all. If I was working for G-d then shouldn’t G-d make it a bit easier? Or, am I really making an impact? Or, what is the ultimate truth? Stuff like that.

So, with these thoughts and frustrations swirling in my mind, I walked into Starbucks to ingest some caffeine to help still the mind and heart. As I am waiting online I see a nice couple who fell off the map about 13 months ago when their baby came into the world. “Hello, Rabbi!” 4 minutes later they were committed to rejoining the rest of us in the living world and a commitment was made by them to join us for High Holiday services.

While this magical interaction was taking place I lost my place on line. A fellow who watched this interaction, graciously invited me to get in front of him. While we were putting our Splenda in our coffees, we had a short exchange and quickly discovered that this fellow had recently committed to reconnecting with Judaism (his mother's faith, father is Baptist).

It became very evident that the angels were sent to remind me that although life has rough patches and rough mornings, everything does have a purpose if we only open our eyes to believe it and on occasion see it!

 

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