Friday, June 29, 2007

It never snows in Joburg

That's what they say, at least.

The truth is, I remember the last time it snowed in Johannesburg. That was in September 1981. Everyone was so excited, especially when they let us go home early from school.

It's not that there was much snow, but we enjoyed it. We threw snowballs and made 10cm snowmen. By the next day, the white winter was gone.

For a few more years after that, I waited expectantly for snow. Each winter, I'd look out at the crystal clear blue sky- and hope.

But, it never came.

People explaines that it never snows in Joburg, how '81 was a freak incident.

Eventually I stopped hoping.

12:30 a.m. Wednesday- a thunderbolt shook my children out of bed. Their knocking on the door woke me.

As I calmed them and prepared to return them to bed, something prompted me to look out of the window. Before my unbelieving eyes, I saw hundreds of little flakes floating down.

By the morning, everything was covered in a light coat of white. Ok, there was less of it than there had been 26 years ago, but it was snow.

The children scooped it up in their hands (unaware of the need for gloves), slipped and slid and had a wonderful morning.

"Snowburg" the newspaper headlines cheerfully proclaimed.

As people marvelled at the white wonder (everyone seemed a little happier than usual), the snow made me think.

About things that we believe will never happen. About how when they takes longer than expected, we start to imagine it will never happen.

It made me think about Moshiach.


Anonymous said...

how very true..
maybe we think about the notion as something that "will happen", as apposed to "lets make it happen", lets do everything in our power, even how little small (lighting a candle for e.g., its amazing how the little things all start to add up, and you find yourself *wanting* to do more) to add to the coming of Moshiach... maybe its about us making it happen, than waiting 'round for it to come...

Rabbi S said...

That's a very valuable point, which I agree with entirely.

Anonymous said...

reason i say that is because i "used to think" like thats what would happen, we even say, this or that when Moshiach comes... like im no expert, so it seemed to me like something that would happen, and it'd all be better (i have no doubt it *will*), but i always thought of it as something that time needed to play out and when the time came it'd be, but i think its something that we can "control", something that we can *make* happen rather than it "come along, and it'll be when it'll be" .. i think if we all really really set our mind to it and we wanted it, we could make it *that* time this very second.. lets make it be : )

Rabbi S said...

While the point of this article was that people shouldn't get stuck in the "it's never going to happen" mode, your point is the key.
Moshiach has been entrusted to us, and we all need to make the effort to make it happen.
The Rambam writes that every Jew should imagine the whole world hanging in perfect balance and your next deed making all the difference.
Then, do that good deed!