Sunday, September 16, 2012

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Fifty-Two Years

at the Western Wall with Reb Gutman Locks on Mystical Paths

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     This Israeli stood in front of me as I tried to bring men over to put on tefillin. He seemed grouchy, as if he was totally against what I was doing. I smiled and said, “Come, put on tefillin. He looked at me as if he did not know what to do. I added, “It is almost Rosh Hashanah. It won’t hurt.”

     He nodded a tiny bit, and walked over. I put tefillin on him and he read the shema, all without the least hint of a smile. When he finished he said, “It’s been 52 years since I last put on tefillin. I laughed and said, “Don’t make me wait another 52 years for you to come back.”

     What actually made him turn… what went on inside his head? I do not know. But I do know that if I had not asked, he would not have changed. This is a tremendous thing for him to do a few days before he will be judged for the New Year.

     As I have been telling you, helping others is not the hard part, caring enough to want to help is.

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