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Shevi'I Shel Pesach

The Holiday of Pesach is a special time to pray for the Final Redemption since we were redeemed from our Exile in Egypt then. During the holiday, we read from King Shlomo's Shir HaShirim - the Song of Songs. One of the passages reads: "We will be glad and rejoice in You" (Shir HaShirim 1:4). The Midrash (Shir HaShirim Rabbah 1:30) relates the following poignant story.

In Tzidan, a woman was married to her husband for ten years and was not privileged to bear him a child. The Law states that in such a case they should divorce and he should marry someone else in order to fulfill the great mitzvah of having children.

They came before Rabi Shim'on bar Yochai to request a divorce. However, Rabi Shim'on told them that just as they made a great celebration when they got married, so should they make a big party before they part.

They prepared an expensive banquet and the woman saw to it that her husband should drink more than he could hold. He then told his wife to go to his house and take the finest object of her choice and take it with her as she departs from him to live life on her own again. When he fell into a deep sleep from drunkenness, she told her servants to take his bed and bring it to her father's home.

Later in the evening he awoke and found himself in his father in law's house and asked his wife how he got there. She told him, "Didn't you tell me to take the finest object from your house? I could not find anything dearer than you!"

When Rabi Shim'on heard what had occurred, he prayed for them and the woman bore a child, because just as Hashem helps barren women, so do tzaddikim (righteous men).

The Midrash concludes, "If this is what happens to one who tells another person, 'I want nothing in the world more than you,' then certainly when the Jewish People say to Hashem, 'We want nothing more than You,' they will be redeemed. This is what is meant in the passage, "We will be glad and rejoice in You."

Shema Yisrael Torah Network
Jerusalem, Israel