I had a great meeting last week with Rabbi Yossi Grossbaum, founder of Chabad Jewish Community Center of Folsom. His story is inspiring:
“Rabbi Yossi was born and raised in a family of Chabad emissaries in the vibrant and friendly Jewish community of Melbourne, Australia. He attended Yeshiva College (Melbourne) for his Elementary & High School education, and later continued his studies at the Educational Institute Oholei Torah in Brooklyn, NY. In 2001, he was chosen as a Yeshiva exchange student and sent for two years to Toronto, Canada. Upon completion of his studies in 2004, he received his Rabbinic Ordination from the Central Lubavitcher Yeshiva in New York. Ever the trail-blazer, Rabbi Yossi, was the founding director of the highly successful Student Outreach Organization of the Yeshiva Lubavitch in Toronto.”
Our conversation was about staying the course through difficult challenges. Many of us are facing tough economic times. This means not having enough money to pay all your bills, right? Or, spending your savings on groceries instead of keeping it for retirement. I know my family is in a tough bind. Maintaining our belief that we’ll still accomplish great things and overcome obstacles is hard.
Rabbi Yossi reminded me of a concept similar to the old addage, its darkest before the dawn. I couldn’t find it in hebrew, however, he explained that a more effective jump is always produced when starting from a crouching position. Historically, great discoveries and terrific achievements often occur just beyond decline and struggle.