I’ve decided to become a gardener.

67 years ago to the day, the Rebbe accepted leadership of Chabad. You see, his father in law, the Previous Rebbe had passed away a year before and it was the first yahrzeit. Chabad had been without leadership for a year and while it was pretty obvious to many that the Rebbe was the only appropriate candidate, the Rebbe didn't seem interested in the job. The Rebbe had been leading many of the Chabad institutions already and was teaching Torah and saying sichos (public talks), but fervently rejected the title "Rebbe".
At the yahrzeit farbrengen of his father in law, just after saying a sicha, (public talk-on Torah) an elder chossid stood up and said, "anyone can say words of Torah, we want to hear a maamor (a much more spiritual kind of talk that only Rebbe's would give)"
The Rebbe obliged, reciting his first Maamor based on the verse באתי לגני-"I've (G-d) come to my garden", and so began the 7th generation of Chabad.
His father in law, the previous Rebbe was known as a very strong man that defied the ruthless Soviet government that was hellbent on stomping out Judaism. You might just say that this was his signature character trait, which also defined the 6th generation of Chabad (all of his followers).
While the Rebbe indeed continued the work of his father in law, his signature style was laid out right in the beginning, in that first Maamor. The Rebbe taught that the world is a garden, or place of deliberate beauty. Nature is beautiful, but is incomparable to a garden. Garden's have trees, flowers and fruit.
Gardens aren't free though. For a garden to stay and become more beautiful, they require constant work. Weeds are always trying to steal the water and nutrients from the ground and each tree and flower has its own set of needs.
We, said the Rebbe, have been entrusted with G-d's garden, and it's our job to plant, water, weed and prune. The 4,000+ Chabad centers and shluchim (representatives) that the Rebbe established during his leadership, are really gardeners. Our job is to tend to the garden and enlist more gardeners to actualize the potential of this world to be the truly beautiful place that G-d intended it to be, which is Moshiach.
Which is why we feel it's appropriate to announce the name of our preschool today; "The Garden Preschool." It is a name that besides for being catchy and relevant to child development, is also what Chabad is all about.


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