March 29, 2012
Rabbi Naftali Estulin in #829, 27 Adar, Moshiach & Geula

Knowing that the Rebbe is with us and directing world events towards the Geula, makes us long to see him. This longing motivates us to action to bring about the hisgalus!

After I left Russia, I once spoke with R’ Mendel Futerfas and expressed my pain over not having used my time in Russia to learn more. R’ Mendel gazed at me with his wise look and declared: You are a liar!

Don’t you believe me?! I asked in astonishment. R’ Mendel responded sharply: If your lack of learning really bothered you, you wouldn’t be sitting now and talking to me about it. You would be sitting and learning!

I recall this story when we start to talk about how painful it is that so-and-so many years have passed that we haven’t seen the Rebbe. I spoke with a shliach this week who expressed his anguish over twenty years having passed since 27 Adar I 5752 and we still don’t have our Rebbe back. How much more can we take?

I remembered R’ Mendel’s razor sharp words and said to him: Maybe instead of thinking about ourselves, we should think about the Rebbe. How much more can the Rebbe take? Twenty years have passed since he asked that all aspects of shlichus be permeated with Geula. How come, in your Chabad house, there isn’t even one shiur on inyanei Moshiach and Geula? It is twenty years now that the Rebbe is waiting for us, you and me!

And instead of taking action, we prefer rolling our eyes and tsk-tsking about how pained we are.


Twenty years have passed since 27 Adar I 5752 and we can look at this passage of years in two, opposing ways. One way is to think about ourselves and focus on the negative. It is twenty years that we don’t see the Rebbe, don’t hear sichos and maamarim, don’t receive dollars.

Another way is to think about the Rebbe and focus on the positive by looking at what is happening in the world around us and seeing the momentous changes that the Rebbe is bringing about in the world, especially this past year. Day by day, the Rebbe is transforming the world into a better place and advancing humanity to the era of the Geula.

This way of thinking takes on a whole different dimension when you learn the Rebbe’s sichos of 5751-5752 and see the amazing expressions he uses that illustrate how he is running world events.

It might sound paradoxical, but the person who believes that the Rebbe is here with us is the one who yearns for the Rebbe more than anyone else, even more than the Chassid who feels that the Rebbe left us twenty years ago.

As the Alter Rebbe describes the tremendous closeness of the Aseres Yemei T’shuva that “it is like a son who is near his father in his house but the father hides from him so that the son will focus on the love and reveal his love in greater measure. When the son recognizes that the father is here and is hiding from him, then surely his love will grow in greater measure.”

It is when we know that the Rebbe is really with us here in the world and playing an active role that we yearn for the full hisgalus!

Such yearning is healthy and real and spurs a person on so that he doesn’t long for the past but takes action to hasten the future.

This is the touchstone for genuine longing: when the yearning leads to action in accordance with the Rebbe’s horaos, including and especially inyanei Moshiach and Geula. This yearning focuses on the future as the Rebbe said a number of times, that a Jew needs to yearn for the future Geula. Or like the special term used in the sicha of 11 Adar 5752 that there is “longing and yearning to reach the month of Nissan already in which they were redeemed and in which they will be redeemed in the future.”

The words “twenty years” shouldn’t bring us down but should wake us up!

Yechi Adoneinu Moreinu V’Rabbeinu Melech HaMoshiach L’olam Va’ed!


Article originally appeared on Beis Moshiach Magazine (
See website for complete article licensing information.