web analytics
July 23, 2014 / 25 Tammuz, 5774
Israel at War: Operation Protective Edge
 
 
At a Glance
Judaism
Sponsored Post
IDC Advocacy Room IDC Fights War on Another Front

Student Union opens ‘hasbara’ room in effort to fill public diplomacy vacuum.



Lucky To Be Robbed


Lessons-logo

It was December of 1980. I was walking towards the Kotel, Judaism’s holiest site. I recalled that a Torah friend of mine had explained before I left New York

“No Jewish neshamah can withstand the powerful emotional connection with the Shechinah (Divine Presence) at the Kotel. The Wall will literally pull you into its warm holiness, and you will start to cry.”

As I got closer to the Wall, I asked myself in concern, “What if I don’t react and I don’t cry? Does that mean that because I am a ba’al teshuvah and I wasted 42 years on nonsense, that I am not privileged to shed tears during this metaphysical encounter?” I then remember the saying “When one prays for forgiveness, or for Hashem’s help, and tears accompany these prayers, Hashem listens to you more attentively.”

Let’s go back to the how and why of my 7,000 mile journey to the “Mount where Hashem is seen.” What motivated me to travel to Jerusalem? Was I on a holy pilgrimage? Did I have in mind the mitzvah of walking around the gates of Zion and counting her towers?

No! My motives for going to Israel had no religious basis. I traveled to the Holy Land for one reason only – to catch a thief!! I wanted to recover stolen merchandise.

A few weeks before, the district attorney’s office of the City of New York had incredibly allowed a jewelry merchant to leave the U.S. for a vacation to Israel after he had unlawfully relieved 40 gem and jewelry dealers out of approximately five million dollars of merchandise during one week’s rampage.

This merchant, who had been honest for over 20 years, acted with premeditation and total lack of conscience as he let his yetzer ha’ra (evil inclination) go wild. How could such a formerly righteous person make 40 mistakes in one week? He robbed 40 Jewish and non-Jewish merchants of about $120,000 worth of merchandise each.

At a meeting of the Diamond Dealers Club, we found out that the culprit has skipped to Israel. They decided to send me to Israel to try to find him, serve him with the proper warrants for his appearance in court and recover everyone’s merchandise.

After appearing in an Israeli court and making numerous unsuccessful trips to the country’s senior police officers, I accomplished nothing. I didn’t recover any merchandise, not did I find any trace of the thief. I was searching in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv. Years later, I found out that he was seen swimming in a hotel pool in Eilat.

Now let’s look at the bright side!

Every morning, before going out on my mission, I first went to the Kotel. Sure enough, the tears flowed down my cheeks as I stood before the Holy Shechinah. I prayed for my wife and children, and for everyone else who needed help. I felt Hashem’s Presence, and to this day, my neshamah has become more sensitive to the fulfillment of the Torah’s mitzvos. Had I not experienced the holiness of the Kotel, I do not know if my faith would be as strong as it is today.

Thus, the true importance of my trip to Israel became clear. I had gone to Israel to find a thief. Instead, I found my own neshamah.

About the Author: George H. Gisser, known as the Monsey Maggid, recently published Happy Kappy – the Flying Kangaroo (Who couldn’t hop!) for four- to eight-year-olds. His new screenplay, “Snowbirds,” is a warm, Jewish-oriented fictional comedy. He can be reached at georgegisser@gmail.com. Visit www.kappythekangaroo.com.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Lucky To Be Robbed”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Ben Gurion International Airport - nearly empty as the U.S. imposes a ban on flights to Israel, caving to Hamas missile attacks.
Bloomberg Defies FAA, Boards El Al for Tel Aviv as US Caves to Hamas Terror
Latest Judaism Stories
PTI-071814

Perhaps, just perhaps, we can relate to this: whenever we feel distant from Hashem, that is the Churban.

Parshat Matot

Over the next 2 weeks covering portion Matot and Maasei, Rabbi Fohrman will bring order to confusion.

Lessons-Emunah-logo

Our home is in the center of the Holy Land, surrounded by (what else?) green hills and valleys.

Business-Halacha-logo

“Sound fine,” said Mrs. Schwartz. “In the middle, paint their names, Shoshana and Yehonasan. He spells his name Yehonasan with a hei and is very particular about it!”

Question: I recently returned from a trip abroad and wanted to say HaGomel. When I mentioned this to the officers of my synagogue, however, they told me – as per the instructions of the synagogue’s rabbi – that I would have to wait until Shabbos to do so. I was not given any reason for this and did not wish to display my ignorance, so I quietly acquiesced. Can you please explain why I had to wait?

Name Withheld
(Via E-Mail)

We may not recognize the adverse affect of eating forbidden foods, but they leave an indelible imprint.

There are several rules that one must adhere to when making a neder.

Important message for Jews in the Diaspora: In times of need run to Israel rather than from Israel.

The negotiation between Moses and the tribes of Reuven and Gad is a model of conflict resolution.

Once again we find ourselves alone – a little lamb among wolves.

When we return to our routines, things don’t have to go back to exactly the way they were.

The Three Weeks determines the “who we are and how we live” as Jews.

Sometimes when Chazal say that two different people are really one, they do not mean it literally, but rather figuratively.

The midrash says that Pinchas, (this parsha), and Eliyahu, prophet of Kings, are one and the same.

More Articles from George H. Gisser
Lessons-logo

Approximately 30 days before Shavuos, my fondest friend, Joshua, a prominent diamond importer, invited me to his Fifth Avenue office. “Chaim, I want to show you a beautiful stone. Maybe you have a customer, and I am sure you could use the broker’s commission” (usually not more than two percent).

Lessons-logo

It was a chilly Shabbos morning in 1984 when my friend, a pearl importer, and I were walking up the long steep road to the hilltop synagogue in Kobe, Japan.

When we finally reached the flat street on top of the hill, I was out of breath. There was a feeling of joy and accomplishment when the shul came into view. Only 50 more feet to go!

It was December of 1980. I was walking towards the Kotel, Judaism’s holiest site. I recalled that a Torah friend of mine had explained before I left New York

    Latest Poll

    Israel's Iron Dome Anti-Missile System:





    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/judaism/jewish-columns/lessons-in-emunah/lucky-to-be-robbed/2009/03/18/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: