You know the pasuk, “asei ritzoncha kiritzono…” make your will according to God’s and He’ll make His will according to yours – ?
Well, the widespread observance of this tactic is awe-inspiring. As a single Orthodox female, I get to see people practice it on an almost weekly basis. Here’s an example:
Setting: a family get-together, a shower, a vort, a wedding…
Characters: me and a friend/aunt/former teacher…
Action as curtain opens: conversation between me and second character. Conversation is winding down and second character is taking her leave.
Me: Well, mazal tov. I guess I’ll be seeing you around at future simchos.
2nd: The next one should be yours!
Me: Erhm. Well thank you.
2nd: You should find your bashert and we should celebrate your wedding/shower/vort bikarov, in the right time!
Did you catch it? “Bikarov, in the right time.” An oxymoron of sorts. The second phrase claims to accept the time of God’s choosing, the first insists that He had better choose a time that is swiftly approaching. The conjunction of the two makes little sense.
People have tried to explain it away as a prayer that the right time should be soon. But let’s face it – if it’s the right time, who cares when it is? It’ll be right, sooner or later. By hoping that the right time is soon, you’re doubting that later can be as good of a right time as earlier. Which means you don’t really believe that a “right time” that comes later is as “right” as a “right time” that comes sooner, and you’re hoping, through the brocha, to influence fate in the direction you believe is better.
In other words, the above explanation requires the well-wishers to be slightly delusional. I prefer to think that they’re just holy. They accept that I’ll get myself married in the right time – that’s the will of God. And since they’ve accepted God’s will, they’re hoping to influence His will in turn – make it soon, eh?
There’s an additional plus to this view of the trite phrase: every time you hear it, it’s a mussar schmooze. Around yomim nora’im, that’s a handy way to think.