Rabbi Berzansky - Chayai Sarah
We all dream. Some people dream of becoming the next Gadol haDor. Others dream of getting the prospective job or shidduch that is on the horizon, and others dream that their children will become big tzaddikim and tzidkanious. What happens when Hashem does not give us what we dreamed for? How do we feel? Most of us probably get down, some declare gam zu l’tovah, and others actually bless Hashem for the bad just as they bless Him for the good.
Eliezer eved Avraham also dreamed just like all of us. If we could look into his heart, we would see no more than one dream: that Yitzchok Avinu would marry his daughter. However, that dream never manifested. Avraham told Eliezer that since his daughter was from a cursed nation (a nation of avadim), and Avraham’s son Yitzchok was from a blessed nation, therefore their children could not marry.
To make matters worse, Avraham had asked him to go to the city of Charan to find a wife for Yitzchok. Such a task should have been like salt on his wound. He should have been insulted, shattered, and gone begrudgingly.
However, Eliezer carried out Avraham’s request with enthusiasm and gusto! This was evident from the miracles that he experienced along the way. His tefillos were answered instantly when he davened to find Yitzchok’s match and, as we know, only tefillos that come from the deepest depths of one’s heart are answered instantly. Additionally, he had kefitzas ha-derech, which only happens to one who acts with alacrity and sincerity.
Now, even if we could understand Eliezer’s enthusiasm to carry out his master’s request, but to introduce himself to Lavan and Besuel as “I am Avraham’s eved (slave),” which implied that he was from a cursed nation, is astonishing. What happened to his dignity and pride? Where were his hurt feelings? After all, it was because he was an eved from that nation of avadim that his dreams crumbled right before his eyes.
R. Yechezkel Levenstein opens our eyes to the secret. Eliezer was happy with who he was; he was sameach b’chelko. He understood and believed that every single person has a specific job and purpose in the world for which only he is designated. As soon as he heard from Avraham that the cursed and blessed could not unite, he understood that his daughter was not meant for Yitzchok. Nothing more needed to be said. This revelation clarified for him what his real purpose was: to be “Eliezer eved Avraham.” That clarity propelled him towards his job of becoming the best “eved Avraham” that he could be. This is how he was able to run with such enthusiasm to Charan and daven with all his heart for Yitzchok’s future wife Rivka.
When Eliezer eved Avraham discovered that his dream did not fit into Hashem’s master plan, he accepted his new lot unconditionally and began working on what Hashem had actually planned for him. His brought him happiness and tranquility. Eliezer eved Avraham is a living example of bitachon for all of us. We all have hopes and dreams. If for some reason Hashem does not grant us our dreams, we must remind ourselves that He is taking care of us and that somehow our dreams did not fit into His master plan. When Eliezer realized that Yitzchok was not going to marry his daughter, he discovered his purpose right underneath his nose and he bore it with pride.
Hashem has something special planned for all of us and it is hiding in our own backyard. As soon as we discover it, we will find happiness and tranquility within ourselves.