By Rabbi Gershon Avtzon – Menahel of Yeshivas Lubavitch Cincinnati
In this week’s Parsha Vayeira, we read of the story of the birth of Yitzchak Avinu. It begins with the visit of the three angels to the home of Avraham and Sara. One angel asks, “Where is Sara?” and Avraham answers that she is in the “ohel” (tent). Right after that answer, she is promised and blessed with a child within the year.
This reminded me of a story that I heard this Shabbas Breishis from the person directly involved in the story (I shortened it as there are many details):
For 3 years, a Satmar chossid who works as a salesman has been asking a store owner in Brooklyn to share with him some stories of the Rebbe.
Due to lack of time or the proper mindset, the Lubavitcher has been putting him off until one day 5 months ago, he has agreed and told over a few stories.
The Satmerer started crying. “I’ve been married for 8 years now. We weren’t blessed with children for years. Doctors told us they were surprised we even had our first child during the first year of marriage.
“I wanted some inspiration in my life and when I saw you, I asked you to share some stories of your Rebbe. You refused until now…” he said bluntly.
Feeling devastated over his ongoing refusal, the Lubavitcher suggested the Satmerer go to the Rebbe’s Ohel in Queens and daven for a blessing.
A few days later, the Satmerer called the Lubavitcher and said he has spoken to his wife and was ready to go to the Ohel.
On a Motzoei Shabbos last winter, they met at the Ohel. The Satmerer walks in and after a mere 30 seconds, he runs out of the stone structure covering the Rebbe’s Ohel, gets into his car and drives off.
The Lubavitcher returned home, puzzled over what transpired in front of his eyes. He decided to keep quiet and not ask any questions.
Shortly before Rosh Hashana 5774, the Satmerer called. “You must be wondering what happened 6 months ago at the Ohel…” he began.
“The whole way there, I kept asking myself if I really should be doing this, but I knew that this is my only hope. When I went in, the internal pressure was so stirring, that I just had to run out.”
And then the Satmerer adds, “I am calling to now give you the good news that my wife is 5 months pregnant with triplets!”
They made up to go back to the Ohel and give thanks to the Rebbe for his special bracha. May the birth be b’sha’ah tova u’mutzlachas (in a good and successful time).