Hashem Alone Holds the Key to Childbirth
Hashem created the
Mothers of our nation without the ability to conceive in order to pressure them
to seek His salvation. When one knows with all their heart that the solution
for their desperate situation resides with one particular individual, he will
call, write, or ``bang down the door`` if necessary, to solicit help for his
plight. The ardent nature of his entreaties reflects his belief that this is
his only avenue of salvation.
The Torah tells of
numerous individuals whose deep faith that Hashem was their only Source of help
brought them to bang down the door of Heaven. Their prayers, fueled
by this total trust, are a template for our own tefillah.
The Medrash tells us that Chanah
(Hannah) and Elkanah
[the parents of Shmuel (Samuel) the Prophet] were
childless for nineteen years, throughout which time Chanah prayed for children to no avail. It was only when her
husband exclaimed, ``Why do you weep,
Chanah? Am I not better to you than ten sons?`` that she realized he
no longer had any hope of her having a child.
Alone, she then poured out her heart to Hashem, convinced that only a miracle would enable her
to have a child. This time her
prayers were answered, and Chanah gave birth to a child who grew up to be one of the
greatest leaders of the Jewish nation, Shmuel HaNavi.
Rav Moshe Ahron Stern, Mashgiach (Spiritual Dean) of the Kaminetzer Yeshivah, probed
further into this episode. Why, he asked, did Chanah
receive so much more than she asked for? Her request was to be blessed with an
ordinary child; nonetheless, her son became a unique leader who was
instrumental in the establishment of the monarchy - he was the one who anointed
David HaMelech (King David) whose dynasty will reign
for all eternity.
Rav Stern explains
that Chanah did not merely ask Hashem for help - she
placed all her hope and trust in Him, knowing that only a miracle would produce
potential, with which her child, Shmuel HaNavi, was blessed, arose from the power of his mother`s
Rabbi Chaim Shmulevifz was praying at the Tomb of Rachel on her yahrtzeit, the eleventh of Cheshvan,
when he heard a woman praying on the other side of the partition.
you know what it means not to have children. You know the hardship of living
many years without children. Can`t you help me?`` These were the only words he heard.
Rabbi Shmulevitz subsequently sent a talmid to the woman`s home
with the following message: ``Your prayers have been accepted in Heaven.
You will have a boy next year and I wish to be sandek
at the bris``. And so it was.
In telling this
story, Dayan Aharon Dunner of England
explained why her prayers were
answered. This woman was not a saint, but merely a simple person who felt
that she needed something, that only Hashem could help her, and that she had
absolutely no control over her life. Her prayer was relevant to her - she
prayed with all her heart and soul and that truly made a difference.
The Torah not only
instructs us to pray - it shows us by example how to make our prayers a true
instrument of salvation.
When we tell
Hashem, You and You alone can help me, we turn wishes and hopes
into answered prayers.
Source: Praying With Fire by Rabbi Heshy
Kleinman (Chapter 8)