Aliyah – 10 Years Later
I thought I had the life of my dreams in America, but Hashem destroyed it. Instead, He gave me the life that I never dared to dream in Israel.
I realized that life in America was a dead-end. No matter how hard I tried to fool myself, Hashem eventually brought me to my knees and made me realize that I had it all backwards. I wanted to believe that my life was 80% spirituality and 20% physicality. After all, I was religious, kept Shabbat, kashrut, I learned on a regular basis, etc. and I lived in an average, run of the mill home with a standard car. No luxury, no frills.
But Hashem forced me to admit that my life in America was 80% physicality, and 20% spirituality. Only in Israel could I live a life where spirituality really came first. Where being Jewish really came first, and where I could live a Torah-inspired life to the fullest. Where I could fulfill the commandments on a I never even imagined possible.
At the same time, I realized that I had been pushing my will for what I thought I wanted for my life, but my life just kept falling to pieces. No matter how hard I tried, everything failed after a year or two. It was enough already! I had read The Garden of by this point and realized that I wasn’t letting Hashem oversee my life. I prayed to Hashem, “I put myself in Your Hands. You know what is best for me. You know what I am supposed to do with my life. And your Dreams for me, are surely even bigger and greater than my own dreams for myself. I am done with being willful! You run my life; just tell me what to do!”
I got to a point where I was truly excited for where Hashem was going to lead me. I stopped pushing for what I wanted. Instead, I just prayed and let Hashem send me His leads.
Here’s a perfect example: When my financial situation got super tight and I still hadn’t found a job, I went to Hashem and prayed: “Wherever you send me a job, that is the city that I will move to!” I told Hashem that I really wanted it to be Israel and I really thought that was the best for me, but wherever He sends me – that's where I’ll go. The very next day I got a phone call from a friend with a job offer in Jerusalem!
My file had already been approved with Nefesh . When I opened it only six months before, I thought maybe I could make Aliyah in 2 or 3 years. This is when I learned the rule: If you want to make Aliyah, open a with Nefesh and fill it with PRAYERS! You might just be amazed at how fast Hashem will answer them! Besides , Baruch Hashem this formula has worked for many people since.
The explanation for the rule is simple: A means “file” in Hebrew, and that’s what NBN calls an application for Aliyah. But also means a backpack. Do the (physical effort) that you can do right now which is to fill out an application, and then keep doing your primary which is prayer. Get all the paperwork ready and approved; approval doesn’t mean you have to get on a plane at any defined date. , you’ll find that you’re ready not long after the paperwork is.
Since my file had already been approved, they were just waiting for me to say that I was ready. I called them and said: “I just got a job that wants me there tomorrow!” They looked at the calendar and said, “The soonest flight lands July 7. We’ll be pushing to get the visa ready, but we can do it.” I looked at the calendar: July 7 was my Hebrew birthday. Another sign from Hashem! What an amazing birthday present!
Now I look back as I celebrate the tenth anniversary of my Aliyah. I remember the miracles, and my that Hashem would surely not forsake me if I followed Him. What was for me then, is knowledge now. Remember I said that I was excited for where Hashem would lead me? I didn’t even know the beginning of it. I say now all the time: “In America, I had the life that I thought was the life of my dreams. Here in Israel, Hashem gave me the life that I didn’t dare to dream in my wildest dreams!”
One of the things I prayed for in my early days after making Aliyah was that I should always appreciate living here, and that it should never become old to me. Rather, every day I should thank Hashem for the privilege of serving Him in His palace, as if it was my first day here.
10 years later, living in Jerusalem is still fresh, new, and enthralling. I still pray to Hashem that I should feel this way every day of my life! And at every single event, every Rabbi Arush lecture that I attend, every wedding – I cry and thank Hashem that I live in Israel to be able to attend at all.
The Land of Israel is one of the biggest gifts Hashem ever gave the Jews. Moreover, Rabbi Arush teaches that the Land of Israel is the land of miracles – and here, the rules all go by , not nature. If you come here ready to live your on a totally new level, Hashem will never let you down!