Wednesday, November 14, 2012

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“Thank G-d, Really”

at the Western Wall by Reb Gutman Locks on Mystical Paths


     This Jewish man is from Brooklyn. He is an Elementary School teacher. When I asked him to put on tefillin he said that he couldn’t. I asked why, and he said that he could not move his arms. I told him that was what I was there for, and I would help him.

     After he prayed I asked him if he was born that way or if something happened. He said that in 1984 he was in a car accident, and was knocked unconscious. He was in a coma for five days. “Then I woke up.” I asked him if he remembered anything from the time that he was in the comma. He said that he didn’t. That he was out “cold.”

     I asked if he was able to continue teaching without the use of his arms. He said that he was, and that people were so kind and helpful to him.

     I asked him what he says about all this that happened to him. He said, “Every morning I wake up and say, “Thank G-d. Really! Thank You G-d for waking me up.”

     This is exactly what we say every morning as soon as we wake up, “I offer thanks to You, living and eternal King, for You have mercifully restored my soul within me; Your faithfulness is great.”[i]

     Most of us say this prayer automatically, without giving it a lot of thought. This Jew says it with deep emotion, and true appreciation. This is because we got it from a book, but he got it from life.

[i] Modeh ani l’fanecha


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