When we give to others we are only returning that which He gave us.
We really are a bunch of schnorrers.
When I started a conversation with the young man his responses were rather cynical but I wouldn't give in.
Obviously it is our choice to accept or deny that G-d is leading us on our path. Yet that choice will determine the meaning of our lives.
"When we were liberated, we blew the shofar again and my father took it with him."
Those who cannot find meaning in their countries of exile find it in this ancient city.
The story was about a mother who lost her husband and eleven of her children in Auschwitz.
Assign each of your children his or her inheritance so that there is less chance for any controversy when you and your husband have passed on.
Rebbetzin, I have seen families where cousins, aunts and uncles are not even invited to one another’s weddings.
Let us understand once and for all that G-d is not a puppeteer and we are not puppets.
It is wise not to react to everything you see or hear.
Examine your life and recite Psalm 100 – the Psalm of Thanksgiving. Yes, you have many things to be grateful for and rejoice in.
I may be 80 but my memory is as good as it was when I 40.
Hashem has His own timetable and He allowed me to make my journey.
Money cannot create a bond of love or faithfulness between husband and wife.
When in a quandary we must always turn to our holy books and search for answers.
She is my first child to reach this stage and, frankly, I’m worried.
What is it that God expects of us and what is the mission He assigned for us?
There is a story about a man full of worry who goes to his Rebbe to seek his advice. “Rebbe,” he cries, “I have parnassah problems. Yankel opened the same store as mine just down the block and his business is thriving while mine is going down.”
Last week I shared a letter from a newly observant Jewish woman. She and her husband reside in a small suburban community outside of Los Angeles. Last year they came to consult with me on a personal religious issue. While they were both ba’alei teshuvah, there was one fine difference between them. He had become a ba’al teshuvah earlier than she and was therefore somewhat more settled in an observant lifestyle.
Over the years I’ve received letters from all over the world in which people share feelings and thoughts they’ve experienced upon becoming became Torah observant. Usually these letters arrive not long after the writers had heard one of my speeches. No matter where a particular speech took place, and no matter whether I spoke the language or had to use a translator, the magic always works. In reality, it’s not magic at all but a little voice in the soul – the “Pintele Yid,” that spark of G-d’s Word engraved on all our neshamahs. Here is one recent letter.
Last week I wrote about the many disappointments in life. So often we dream of something, wish for something, pray for something – only to discover that when it happens, it is not quite the way we envisioned it. I illustrated this concept through a Hungarian story I recalled from my childhood about a little boy who more than anything else wanted a rocking horse, a coveted toy in Hungary.
There is a Hungarian tale I’ve always found meaningful and yet sad. It is about a little boy who always wanted his own rocking horse. (In Hungry a rocking horse was a toy that belonged to only the privileged few.)
For several weeks now we’ve been discussing lack of gratitude – one of the most destructive forces in our society. When people think everything is coming to them, they become selfish, angry individuals. They do not know how to reciprocate. They do not know how to be grateful and, worse still, they become bitter and destructive elements in society. They make miserable sons, daughters and marriage partners. They have no regard for parents, grandparents, Torah teachers and the elderly.
As I’ve noted in recent weeks, appreciation is a lost concept in our society. Even when we are blessed by the many kindnesses of G-d, we tend to take them for granted and delude ourselves into thinking we are responsible for them all. In vain did our Torah warn us not to fall into the trap of “my strength and the power of my own hand accomplished this.”