Wednesday, October 26, 2016

A Rebbe Story: Dedication to the Holy Torah

A Rebbe Story: Dedication to the Holy Torah:

Gut Isru Chag everyone!  It has been a long time since I last posted, and now I would like to, B'Ezras Hashem Yisbarech, share a great story and lesson with you all from Gemara Yoma 35b, that is really very proper for post-Simchas Torah: 

Hillel HaZakein a"h use to only earn half a dinar a day, half of which he would give to the guard at the Beis Midrash, and the other half he would use for his family, for food, clothing, etc. 

One day, however, he couldn't earn any money, and he couldn't pay the guard at the Beis Midrash, so he would not let him in.  What did Hillel HaZakein do?  He climbed up the building, and sat on the skylight, in order to still be able to hear and drink in the holy words of Torah from Shemaya and Avtalyon, both a"h. 

And the Gemara tells us that it was winter at the time, and snow fell on him.  So, when the sun rose, Shemaya a"h realized that the Beis Midrash was dark, when it should be light, and he voiced this to Avtalyon a"h.  They looked up and saw the shape of a man on the skylight. 

They went up and checked on the roof, and lo!  Hillel was on the skylight - covered by three cubits of snow!  They took him down, bathed him, anointed him, and put him near the fire, and said "This man deserves to have the Shabbos broken for him." (I.e. they were saying how extremely great  he was).  

What an inspiring story!  Hillel HaZakein was just so, so dedicated to the holy, precious Torah, that he was willing to be in absolute discomfort, and even risk his life for it!  His only desire was to serve the Blessed Hashem and learn His Holy Torah.  He understood how great the precious Torah is (or maybe even just a little bit of how precious it is)!  We just don't seem to; which is likely why we aren't as dedicated to learning it. 

So we need to take the message of this story, B'Ezras Hashem, and really internalize it.  The greatest gift that Hashem could give us - and, in fact, gave us, in His Great Kindness - is the ability to serve Him and to learn His Holy Torah.  No matter who you are or what you do, you must try your best to learn Torah.  We must always truly try to find ways to learn Hashem's Holy Torah as much as we can, and drink in it's pearls of wisdom. 

May Hashem help everyone take to heart the holiness and preciousness of the greatest treasure out there - the Torah HaKedosha, Amein vi'Amein.  And in the merit of truly learning Torah Li'Shem Shamayim and with happiness, Hashem will certainly send Mashiach Tzidkeinu, very, very speedily in everyone's days.  May He do so, Amein, vi'Amein. 

Have a wonderful, wonderful day everyone! 

Refoel Berel

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