Thursday, September 20, 2018

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You Never Know

   by Reb Gutman Locks

You Never Know


     You never know what works until you try it, and even then, you never know.

     He is from London visiting Israel with his family. When he walked in I called over inviting him to put on tefillin. He used a common defense, "I'm okay."

     And as usual, I called back, "But you could be better."

     And, as often happens, he ignored me and kept walking.

     After some time, he and the boys came away from the Kotel and walked by on their way out.

     I tried again, "You didn't come here just to look at the stones. Come put on tefillin."      

     Again, he said, "I'm okay," and kept walking away even faster.

     What's so bad about not getting him is not just that he missed the opportunity to do a mitzvah, but when he runs away from a mitzvah in front of his children they learn to run away from the mitzvahs too.

     I yelled, "Oy! You blew it!" He kept on walking away.

     Some two or three minutes later he walked back saying, "You talked me into it."

     Something happened.

     I put tefillin on him, had him bless his boys, and go to the Kotel again to pray for his loved ones. And as usual, I explained to the boys why when they grow up they have to marry only a Jewish girl. Sure, I am 15 years or so early, but the thought has to be planted in their head when they are young and not just given to them after they grow up.

     I asked him, "What happened? Why did you decide to come back and put on tefillin?"

     He said, "I thought of my grandfather and what he would want."

     G-d bless the memory of his grandfather. He did that mitzvah even from his place in Heaven.



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