Short and Sweet:

Tips for living the abundant life


"For 25 Years I’ve Washed Your Socks…"

"Do you love me?" said Tevye the milkman to his wife Golda.  "How can you talk of love right now? Have you lost your mind?", Golda replies.  In the one of the most dramatic moments of the ‘Fiddler on the Roof’ musical, Tevye and Golda struggle to discover what twenty-five years of married life really mean.  Is it just washing socks and raising children, or is there something deeper, something more lasting?  "Do you love me?" Tevye said.  In a similar way, God wants to know if we really love Him.  That is why the Shema in Deuteronomy 6:5 calls us to ‘love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and all your strength’.  That is why Psalm 116 begins by saying ‘I love the Lord, for he has heard my voice’.  Like Tevye and Golda, my wife and I are celebrating our 25th Silver Wedding Anniversary.  We too are discovering afresh that marriage really matters, and that our hearts must remain soft towards each other.  In both marriage and spirituality, it never works to just go through the motions.

‘Fiddler on the Roof’, while turned into a 1953 play by Arnold Perl and a 1957 musical by Joseph Stein, was originally written by the world’s most famous Yiddish writer, Shalom Aleichem.  Following an anti-Jewish pogrom in Russia, Shalom decided to emigrate to North America.  Always labeled the ‘Yiddish Mark Twain’, he finally was able to meet Mark Twain (a.k.a. Samuel Clemens).  Mark Twain reportedly told Shalom how humorous he found that label, because people had always referred to him as ‘the American Shalom Aleichem’.  As one of the most prolific authors of any world literature, Shalom’s collected works spanned a full 28 volumes.  When refused the hand of his future wife Olga, Shalom wrote such a heart-breaking love story that his future father-in-law recanted.  Shalom’s real name was Shalom Rabinowitz but he used a pseudonym because his wealthy father saw Yiddish as a ‘gutter language’ unworthy of the intelligentsia who wrote in Hebrew and Russian.

My two teenage sons just had the privilege of being Tevye and Lazar Wolf in their BCCA School’s production of Fiddler on the Roof.  What a joy to see them blossom and grow through such an uplifting experience.  Click to find out more….


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St. Simon's Anglican Church 
North Vancouver, B.C.