Almost the whole of Shabbat, it was pouring and howling wind in Jerusalem, with a fair sprinkling of thunder and lightning, too.
These are the ‘late rains’ we pray for in our davening, until Pesach. And this year, God seems to be answering the prayer for rain abundantly, after almost 5 years of relative drought.
The last time the Kinneret started to fill up to full capacity was way back in the winter of 2013 when Operation Pillar of Defense was going on in the Gaza strip, as a response to terrorist rockets falling across Israel.
But the wettest winter in recent times happened in 1991, when the Gulf War was occurring, and Israel was being rocketed with Saddam’s scuds, and everyone was huddling in their ‘safe’ rooms with tape over the window, as instructed by the authorities.
(What makes the connection between rain and war even more distinctly is that the only year when Israel got absolutely ZERO rainfall was 2000, when Ehud Barak was PM and trying to negotiate half of Israel away to Yasser Arafat, at the failed Camp David ‘peace accords’.)
Last week, on Thursday, two rockets were apparently ‘accidentally’ fired at Tel Aviv.
You know how that goes, Ahmed accidentally leant against the control panel, and sent a precision Grad straight to the heart of the country.
And then, while Ahmed was still feeling bad about his blooper, Mohammed came in, tripped on a bit of dodgy carpet and also accidentally ‘fell’ against the missile launching control panel, to send a second rocket hurtling at Tel Aviv.
And this accident triggered a flurry of ‘tough man’ statements from our God-less politicians, each one trying to pretend that the safety of the country lies in their hands, alone.
With the lefties, the lie is obvious.
But with our current PM, so many otherwise believing Jews also seem to have been sucked into the fiction that all we need to emerge victorious in any confrontation with the enemy is to have Bibi as PM.
Things have gone so far, it’s approaching a modern form of idol-worship.
Who was ‘tougher’ than Ariel Sharon? But who was more of a disaster, ultimately?
Who was ‘weaker’ than Ehud Olmert? Yet that’s the guy who was steering the ship when the country went to war, twice.
Our Sages told us,
‘The heart of kings is in God’s hand’.
If the Jewish people are worthy, we’ll get miracles and protection even with a PM from Hamas, and if not – then not.
Even with Bibi.
Rav Berland has been telling us for months that our enemies have tens of thousands of rockets pointed at every part of the country, and that Tel Aviv and Jerusalem will not be spared, when the next round of hostilities start up.
He’s working day and night to try to sweeten things at their source, spiritually, in Heaven – but he needs us to work with him.
Rabbenu, Rebbe Nachman, explained that while we can’t do anything, really, without the help of the Tzaddikim, they also can’t do anything, really, without our active participation and yearning and prayers, however flawed.
Rav Berland called the prayer gathering for 4th Nissan, 5779, (Monday night, April 9, 2019) in Hevron weeks before the election was called, weeks before they found the ‘terror tunnels’ in the North. He made some pretty hair-raising statements about what is really on the cards, what we are really up against.
The Rav needs 50,000 people to join him in prayer, to really be able to sweeten the judgements we can all feel hanging so heavily in the air right now.
Sure, getting to Hevron is a shlep. Sure, it’s inconvenient, time consuming, uncomfortable. And then, there’s also the small point of convincing yourself that the Rav really is a huge tzaddik, and that all the effort is really worthwhile.
Everyone has the same tests, the same questions, the same inner battle.
But when you look at his track record, like when he said getting 10,000 people to Hevron would stop the ‘stabbing Intifada’ in its tracks, two years ago – and it did, immediately – that should hopefully give you enough strength to gird your loins, and make plans to be in Hevron Rosh Chodesh Nissan.
Because the alternative is getting a rocket through your roof.
So, rockets and rain seems to be going together again this year.
And I have a feeling, there are more storms on the way, before Pesach.