Seeing The Good In Life

Sometimes, it’s so easy to get caught up in all the horrible things that are happening around us in the world.

Just this last week, the murder of the 11 Jews in Pittsburgh.  Then there is the caravan of immigrants coming up to the border and the military being called out. Of course, there is the endless political bickering and polarization underscored again with the upcoming midterm elections.  Further, to top it off, I read that North Korea is threatening to restart their nuclear program if they don’t start receiving some sanctions relief. The list goes on and it just seems like there is always something.

But after synagogue services today, we sat at the Kiddish with a lovely couple, and the lady took the opportunity to go around the table and ask each person: “What good thing happened to you this week?” I really appreciated the idea of focusing on the good and the miracles we live through every day rather than the bad things. It was interesting though that people seemed to have trouble saying something really positive from their week. In truth, they seemed more enveloped in the problems of the times rather than the opportunities that each day brings.

The speaker in synagogue today reminded us that despite what sometimes seems like so much bad around us and in the world, like with the massacre in Pittsburgh last Shabbat, there are still good people out there. He took the moment to tell us about a card and flowers that someone left at the synagogue before Shabbat. In the card, this person who was a non-Jew, wrote about their compassion for the victims and their solidarity with us in what happened.

Truly, despite all the evil, there does always shines a light of good in this world. Just like after the Holocaust where six million of our brothers and sisters were murdered, there arose the survivors to rebuild our nation in the holy land of Israel after 2,000 years of exile.  Moreover, on a personal level this week, I had a medical procedure of my own, and even though it was difficult looking back on my week, I can definitely appreciate the good that happened to me coming through it under G-d’s watchful eyes and merciful hands.

Yes, life is challenging and it’s often hard to lift our heads up above the problems and challenges of each day, but if you ask yourself to name even just one good thing that happened to you, I am certain you can find that light in your life. Finally, I believe that with the appreciation of the good in each day and every week will come the faith and hope in the future where even greater things can, and please G-d will, happen for all of us.

About the Author
Andy Blumenthal is business and technology leader who writes frequently about Jewish life, culture, and security. All opinions are his own.
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