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Wondrous Paths & Patterns

by Chaya Rivka Zwolinski

The concept of gratitude has been a popular one and an important one in the world at large. For the past several years, people have been encouraged to write gratitude journals. To be thankful for what they have.

The Torah explicitly tells us that our gratitude should be directed towards Hakadosh Baruch Hu for everything we have in our lives; because He creates and sustains every single atom of existence at all times.

What do you do, though, if you’re not feeling it?

What do you do if you’ve sat down and you’ve written out twenty things? Forty things? A hundred things that you know you should be grateful for? It might be family. It might be your home. It might be chocolate. It might be blue skies. It might be your health.

But you’re not really there emotionally. It hasn’t touched your heart.

Rebbe Nachman says that we should train ourselves to become aware of the Hashgachah Pratis, the Divine Providence, in our lives. He encourages us to actively look at the things that seem like coincidences and to knowingly and willingly attribute them to their Ultimate Source.

Rav Moshe Feinstein also told people that it would be a good idea if they sat down and wrote out all the ways they could see the Hand of Hashem in their lives; to make note of these occurrences.

So many people have achieved spiritual healing and were brought to gratitude by noticing how Hashem has arranged their lives in a particular way. This awareness, this focus helped them arrive at a particular point and get to the next level they needed to get to.

You can take a look at something simple. Being in a rush and having a parking spot opening up for you. And you can look at something much complex, such as the patterns in your life that led you to your career. To your marriage. To the space where you live.

Everything is ultimately from the One True Source. When we see how carefully our lives have been arranged for us, we naturally come to a state of gratitude. And we achieve it a deeper level than we did before.

May you have a day in which you are able to see the wondrous paths and patterns in your life.

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