I’m Wrong You’re Right

Why do we break a glass at the wedding? Remembering the destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem is one reason given but I’m going to give you another. Sorry Howard but when you break the glass in 2 week it’s the last time you’ll be able to put your foot down. After that Danielle will always be right. The defense rests its case (for those who don’t know, Danielle’s a Defense Lawyer, and Howard’s a Plaintiff).

All joking aside, being able to admit when you are wrong and another is right is extremely difficult to do. We think ‘if I only rationalize the situation, she’ll see it my way.’ After all, we understand why we act the way we do. To truly take a step back and say ‘I did wrong here’ when that is the case is truly a mark of bravery and courage.

Even the hardheaded, stubborn Pharaoh admits wrongdoing at the end of Parshat VaEra. He says to Moses חטאתי הפעם: ה הוא הצדיק ואני ועמי הרשעים. After the plague of hail, Pharaoh said, ‘I have sinned this time: G-d is in the right, and my nation and I are the wicked ones.’[1] This is a startling statement: Pharaoh, who believes that he himself is god, admits wrongdoing. For a split second he gets off his high horse and says to Moses and Aaron, ‘You know that G-d, you believe in? He’s right and I’m wrong.” If Pharaoh can do it, all the more so must we when the situation calls for it.

Admitting we are wrong is challenging. It is far easier to harden our hearts, continuing in the same direction we began. However, our greatest leaders each admitted their mistakes. When the Prophet Nathan exposed King David’s sin with Batsheva, our greatest king ever, David, saidלה  חטאתי “I have sinned against G-d.”[2] When Judah, who our people is named after, realized he sinned against Tamar by withholding his youngest son from her, he said צדקה ממני, “she is more righteous than me.”[3] Admitting wrongdoing when exposed is the hallmark of a leader, as well as a sign of a good partner in a relationship.

Danielle and Howard-we are so honored to be here today as you celebrate your upcoming marriage. As lawyers, both of you understand how to argue from the perspective of your client-and you do this on opposite sides of the aisle. However, as a couple you are on the same team. We know that through communication and working together you will conquer any challenges that you face in this roller-coaster and obstacle course that we call life. Always remember the love you share and the way you care about one another, letting that shine through. Howard-it doesn’t hurt to keep in the back of your head the following mantra: My wife is always right.

Mazal Tov on your aufruf and upcoming wedding. To crystallize the joy we feel about this celebratory event, please turn to the handout in your Shabbat sheet which we will read responsively.

[1] Exodus 9:27

[2] 2 Samuel 12:13

[3] Genesis 38:26

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