Close but no Cigar
In honor of the Yom Tov Pesach, I will present a wonderful story with a powerful lesson.
Close your eyes and travel with me back to my Zaide's Shul in the city of Bardichev.
The seder table is set regally. The Matzos, the wine, the Kaara.
The participants are anxiously awaiting the Heiligeh Bardichever to recite Kadaish!
But Reb Levy Yitchok is not ready.
He turns to his gabai and says "get me a loaf of Kosher bread"
"Kosher Bread??!! Rebbe, it's Pesach!!"
"Get me the bread at once! Search the town from top to bottom!"
The gabbai leaves bewildered.
An hour later, he returns empty handed.
"Rebbe, I searched all over. No one has bread. Not Chanalle the widow, or even Itsik the simple blacksmith."
"Ok", says the Rebbe, "so get me a cigar!"
"A cigar?" says the gabbai, "It is contraband! Anyone possessing a cigar can be jailed at once!"
"Get me a cigar!"
Minutes later the gabbai returns with a fine selection of cigars.
"Tatte in Himmel!" says the Heiligeh Rebbe...
"You wrote in your Torah that for seven days there should be NO chametz.
You have no police force, no inspectors snooping around, and yet no one but no one has chametz.
While the government has very strict rules on owning tobacco, punishable by life in the Siberian jails.
And look, all I needed to do is ask - and I have a cigar!
TATTEH, where else do you have such a nation?!!!"
And with that, the Heilige Bardichiver began the Seder, "KAADAYSH!!"
And the heiligeh Bardichever's grandson wants to grab onto his Zayde's theme.
TATTEH, LOOK AT YOUR CHOSEN NATION.
Yes, the goyim and the Yetzer Hara throw all their shmutz - and worse - on us.
But all we want IS YOU!!
"Kol dodi dofek, pischu lee...
the sound of my beloved knocks, open for me!"
A kushiren fraylichen YOM TOV!!