Hydroplaning on the 101


As I was driving today on the 101 through the horrendous downpour, I started thinking about what a pain in the neck this rain was turning out to be. 

The soppy weather, the dull grey cloudy day, the cold dripping clothes that was now my attire. I had even seen some cars along the highway that had slid and crashed into the side rails!

And as I'm drifting off into my thoughts, I myself start to glide, hydroplaning on the 101!

Thank G‑d it was only for a few seconds, and then the wheels of my car caught traction and I was on 'tera firma' once again.

I couldn't help but start to question why this had to be one of those of those days...

But then I remembered that this past year was a drought in Northern California. And this flood like downpour has to be really wonderful at helping replenish our water supply; so what a blessing this really is.

So what is this? A blessing or a curse?

It depends on whose make it rain plentifully, heeding to the prayers of the farmers instead.

So is this rain good news? That is up to me whether to think that way.

In this week’s Torah portion (Gen. Chapter 39), we read about Yosef who has been sold as a slave by his brothers and was working in an Egyptian master’s house. He is accused of a crime and is then thrown into an Egyptian prison.

While he is there he encounters, two Egyptian former officers of the Pharaoh, and seeing them in a bad mood he greets them one morning, "why are you so sad today?"

Why? I’ll tell you why, because they are in jail!

Out of all people, Yosef should know why they are in a bad mood! In fact Yosef himself should be in a miserable mood! He is a prisoner in a strange land on false charges after having being sold into slavery by his very own family!!!

Should he have not a reason to be sad? Angry? Depressed?

And not just is he obviously in a good mood, he can’t handle that the others are feeling down and kindly asks of his fellow inmates. Why are you so sad today?!!!

Yosef, had mastered the art of seeing things in a positive light and somehow found happiness even in a dungeon in Egypt!

And it is because of this positive and caring spin on things, that Yosef made a friendship which eventually freed him from prison and he rose to be second in command to the Pharaoh. Thereby having the privilege of saving Egypt and the surrounding area from famine and hunger! Apparently, choosing to focus on the positive has a way of bringing about the positive in real life!

Pretty much every situation that we encounter has a positive side to it, and Yosef chose to see the blessing in it.

Is the flood these days a blessing or a curse?

It’s up to us how we choose to perceive it. Let us choose to see the much appreciated blessing.

Shabbat Shalom!


Rabbi Levi