Installment 75

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In the previous Installment, I wrote about coming to a turning point, and having to truly accept who I was and what that meant. Just a few days following that decision, Mary had a dream about pregnancy, not Mary herself getting pregnant, but another woman. So that led me to pray.

During my interactive prayer on November 20, 2013, I was led to pray with my tallit, but not to give a blessing. I began: Father, I don’t ache, but I am grieved. I accept this and I will love them both. Have I understood/interpreted your [leading] correctly? The Divine responded:

Yes. Yes you have. She will be with child.

I look back on all of this and read my journal and I am not quite certain about how this came about, because I didn’t make many notes. I simply accept that I came to the understanding that the Divine had referred to some kind of connection to her child.

Importantly, the Divine did not negate or censure my conclusion. So based on that, it seems I had drawn the proper conclusion from the leading.

However, at this juncture, I kind of want to take a few moments to meander through some thoughts, focusing primarily on family, and it might prove somewhat uncomfortable, but it is not intended to be, and then return to the prayer.

Children. The best thing that can happen is that a child is born to a mother who is in a dedicated relationship with the father of the child. We generally refer to that as marriage. That is the best environment for children, to be born to and then raised by the very ones who gave them life.

However, children do not always experience that “ideal”. For instance, my own wife Mary has an adoptive father. He married Mary’s mother and some months thereafter, adopted Mary as his own child, and proved to be a quality father.

Why do I include this in my discussion? In order to reveal where I was.

Right, wrong, or indifferent, as a man who would be father, I wanted nothing to do with someone else’s offspring. That might make me unlikeable to some, but that is how I felt about it. The relationship dynamics are such that few adoptive fathers or step-fathers have any real influence on the child.

But there are the exceptions, and quality exceptions, like my father-in-law. That kind of quality was passed to his son. So for that my father-in-law receives all kinds of praise from me. It takes a unique man to accept some other man’s child as his own.

But for me, I didn’t want to ever face that situation. I lived my life in ways to make choices that would mitigate, if not negate, the entire possibility of that happening for me. And my choices worked.

For me, that didn’t make me a better man, no. Those decisions simply meant I had one less issue in my life. I will admit that it is kind of self-serving. But don’t we all make decisions that are based on what’s best for us?

When these events happened and I understood that I was led to marry another wife -I have shared “My Story”- it was difficult for me to accept and adjust. So when this occurred and I came to understand that I would be a father to some other man’s child, it sat uncomfortable with me, but I went to God in prayer.

After the response above, the Divine added:

Your answer today was not from anguish, but hope, you have learned the value of life,

I want to stop there for a minute. With Installment 35, I shared that through prayer I learned that I had lost two children. That was back in October 2012. So when November 2013 rolled around and I experienced that moment, I reacted differently than I would have previously. From a personal perspective, I am certain of it, but the Divine added:

you have learned the value of life, especially having learned about your own children, Joy and Simcha.

Sharing “My Story” has been an interesting event. It contains very personal moments, along with spiritual growth that some find difficult to accept. All I can say is that I know that I experienced these transformative events, and they have helped shape my view of the world. I am a far more compassionate person than I used to be, a far more forgiving person, and tremendously more tolerant regarding people and the way in which life unfolds and how that unfolding affects them.

So, for me, without having experienced the events of October 2012, my reaction in November 2013 probably would have been different. Instead, the Divine said I had learned the value of life, and that I had responded not out of anguish, but hope.

After that information about my children, the Divine added:

Do pray for Rachel,

From that, it doesn’t seem that the Divine specified how to pray for her, just that I was to pray for her, and since then, I have. The Divine continued:

she will make the right and proper choice, but doing so will be the most difficult thing she has ever done.

From this, it seems then, that there is a child in the picture, because the proper choice is sanctity of life, because that is valuing life, and in doing such, somehow she faces the most difficult thing she has ever faced. Yet, the Divine added:

She will be thankful she made the correct choice,

Sometimes making the correct choice comes after making a wrong choice. Some people want to hold the wrong choice against the person and seemingly continue condemning the person as they make the right choice. The right thing is always the right thing, even when others disagree, or go on a character destruction spree.

But doing the right thing doesn’t mean that there isn’t fallout. For me, doing the right thing is having this marriage of two wives. But that doesn’t mean I don’t suffer fallout from making the right decision, which is why it is important that the Divine added:

but like you, you had to have your ‘back against a wall’ but you made the right choice, and so will she.

Sometimes to do the right thing, we actually have to feel like our back is against a wall, making us feel like we have no other choice. Sad, is it not? Yet sometimes, the best things in life come from those moments.

Day One of Chanukah began on November 28, 2013. On that day I spent time in interactive prayer. I was led to remove my shoes, not to begin with a blessing, but I was praying under my tallit. I began: I am here, Father. The Divine responded:

Yes my son, you are.

From there the prayer continued speaking about the events of my day and concepts involving Mary. Later the Divine asked me:

What is it that you feel you want the most?

I answered: A miracle Father. I then went on to say that I needed a miracle regarding employment and the lady who would join my family. Later, the Divine asked:

What is a miracle to you?

I answered: Seeing something come to pass that I know I could never achieve on my own…. The Divine inquired of me if I wanted miracles, and my answer was: It has been said that Chanukah is the time for miracles, so yes. I want these miracles. The Divine responded conveying, in part:

Share of the knowledge you have gained, speak of me when you have opportunity, give of your betterments for the blessing of others, be their miracle.

The Divine communicates three things that I am to do. In doing those three things, I become someone else’s miracle.

To me, becoming someone else’s miracle is interesting. Because I said that a miracle was “seeing something come to pass that I know I could never achieve on my own”. I am not sure how I “become” someone else’s miracle, but perhaps my own “definition” gives a possibility.

After conveying those things, the Divine then conveyed things about my wife Mary. The Divine conveyed ideas personal to her, speaking about her development as a person.

After conveying those things, the Divine conveyed things about Rachel. In part, the Divine conveyed:

Accept her, faults and all…

Is that not what we all want? To be accepted, with all of our faults. Yet, I know how difficult it is to accept myself. I have faults. Sometimes I cannot even walk without tripping. It’s ridiculous to think that making a mistake while walking reminds me of my weaknesses and imperfections.

The Scriptures teach us that iron sharpens iron. And with that, as believers, we often take it to heart and push each other to be better disciples, much of the time to where we hurt the development of others.

Yet, each of us wants to be accepted. We don’t want others identifying our faults, our weaknesses, our idiosyncrasies, or our little ticks as an individual.

That message has set with me since I received it. I have even tried to incorporate that concept into my entire life. I have tried to do a better job of accepting Mary, faults and all.

Accepting people is probably the most difficult thing I know. I push myself to spell correctly, punctuate correctly, speak correct grammar, and avoid off-putting phrases, becoming the best individual person I can.

I know the efforts I go through, yet it feels vain, for I see others and interact with others who are far less attentive. This doesn’t mean I judge them, it’s just difficult to accept them, faults and all. Judging and accepting are two different things, for example, someone who has less than tasteful manners when eating or using the restroom. I am not going to judge them for those less than tasteful manners, but that doesn’t mean I am ready to accept them into my dinning room or ready to let them use my restroom.

We all have our faults, yet we all want to be accepted. But it has to be said that accepting each other is difficult. Knowing that, I wonder if this “Rachel” is ready to accept me, faults and all?

Am I ready to accept her, faults and all?

I know that I am ready to meet this “Rachel”. I am ready to learn of her and learn about her. I am ready to experience her faults, weaknesses, idiosyncrasies, and personal ticks.

That is part of the experience of life. Who knows, maybe she has some kind of trait that others have disliked, but makes me smile.

Blessings and Shalom