Assimilation is a dangerous thing. It’s no wonder that Jewish communities through the ages have fought it. In today’s culture, many think this is just silly, old-fashioned nonsense. Here in the U.S., we expect everyone who moves here to assimilate. If you want to live here, you must learn our ways. Continue reading “Assimilation”
Many believe that we are all lost and must be found in order to be “saved” from sin. This is a false teaching predicated by those who seek to benefit in some way by “saving” us. This teaching, while well established through the years, does not come from scripture and therefore cannot be trusted.
You are where you need to be.
Our creator wishes only that we return to Him. For many people, this is difficult. We must change everything about our lives. We have to change the things we do and the things we accept as proper. Some people find this too difficult in their current situation. To put it plainly, they have it too good to change or even want to change. For some, the idea of change is frightening. A lot of people don’t like change. It’s that simple. Our loving creator, who is involved in everything, finds ways to enable us to change. Changing must still be our decision, but He puts us in situations in order to make us think about it. Everything that happens to us is for a reason. This doesn’t just apply to the big, life-changing things like marriage or having a child. It also applies to the times when you get stuck at a stoplight or a train crossing. Remember, everything that happens is for the very best; even those things we perceive as bad. For example, getting stuck at a stoplight might just save you from getting into a car accident down the road. If He really desired to punish us, He would let us go on ahead and get in that accident. The fact is that we cannot ever know how many times a day He does save us. He may have even saved you from a deadly disease today. You don’t know the amazing things He does for you on a daily basis.
People often need a little nudge to get them thinking about their lives and the way they live. Some people need a bigger nudge than others. He might just take you out of that good paying job and put you on a limited income. If He does this, know that it is for the very best. You must thank Him for these things. It means He is giving you what you need in order that you can come to repentance. That is what He wants from us. It doesn’t matter to Him if you are rich or poor. He is still your loving creator. He made you the way you are for a reason. If you are not fulfilling that purpose, He will do something for you that is intended to wake you up. Unfortunately, many people misunderstand this and place blame on Him for their shortcomings. He is not at fault, you are. Does a loving parent let their kids continue doing things that will hurt them? Of course not. They make a change. They take away the dangerous item or remove them from a dangerous situation. G-d is the same with us. We are just like the child who does not see the danger. The difference is that the danger we are facing is the danger to our souls.
On the level
We must realize that we are on a low spiritual level before we can come to repentance. It is human nature to think we are on a higher spiritual level than we actually are. This is an ego problem. In such a state, we come to think we are above others in some way. This can lead us to look down on other people. If you are in a position that causes you to look down on others, that is a big problem. We are all created the same; in the image of G-d. If you are looking down on those whom you consider sinners, you are the sinner. In that condition, you cannot come to repentance. In order for us to realize where we are at on a spiritual level, HaShem allows us to fall into sin. That sin clouds the soul. If we continue down that path, it gets harder and harder to return to the truth. This in no way means it is impossible. When we are caught up in a sinful life, our soul knows that it is being polluted. It yearns for the truth. When we finally realize that we are on that low level, we feel embarrassed before HaShem. This is how He knows we are truly repentant. One who sins and is not embarrassed about it cannot be sorry for what they did. If one is not sorry for their sins, they will not repent of those sins because they don’t honestly think they did anything wrong. Their ego is telling them they are innocent. Letting yourself to be ruled by the ego leads to arrogance. Arrogance makes us believe that we are better than others. It is a vicious cycle.
HaShem puts His hand on every aspect of our lives. If you look for it in you daily life, you can see it. Even through the clouds of the sinful life, He allows you to see His work. But you must actively look for it. Consider this. If you are looking for HaShem’s work in your life, you are actually looking for Him. Those who look for Him will be helped. He will let you see. Even if you can only see a small amount of what He is doing, you will realize that He is working in your life and doing what is best for you. If you can see Him working in your life, you can see Him. This is necessary if you wish to come to repentance.
Know that this is a process which you must go through. There will be times of struggle and time of gain. Be careful not to let the times of gain cloud your judgment. Don’t think that you’ve made it and now everything is going to be great. When you do this you are giving yourself the credit. The truth is that you did not do anything, HaShem did the work in your life that allowed you to come to repentance. You cannot say “I did it”. What happened was that HaShem gave you the merit to come to repentance. If you think you did it, that is your ego talking again and you have not yet arrived where you think. When you do hit a pitfall, don’t beat yourself up over it. That is also HaShem working in your life. You see, He knows when your ego is trying to take over. The pitfalls are like a safety net, keeping you safe from your ego and the arrogance it brings.
The path of repentance is not easy and does not happen overnight. Those of us who are on a low spiritual level, and I include myself, have much to learn and much to realize. Learning comes from studying the Torah and the other holy texts. They are filled with the information we need. Realizations are different. They come to us directly from HaShem and are meant only for us at the time when they are most needed or will do the most good. If HaShem is giving you realizations, be happy and know that you are on the right track.
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I’ve heard it said many times that the times in our lives lead us to where we should be; that we pick up various things along the way which we will need later in life. You’ve probably heard this too. Most people say this as a way to ease someone’s pain during a trying time. There is much more to this little saying than I ever knew. Continue reading “Realizations”
I know a lot of Christians. They are my family, friends, and coworkers. Since learning the truth about their religion, some might think I don’t like them anymore. If you think like that, you are wrong. I don’t hate you. I hate that you are living a lie. I hate that you won’t study the scriptures to learn the truth. I hate that you won’t listen to someone who is only trying to help you see the truth. I hate that you violate scripture with your worship of a man. But, I don’t hate you. Continue reading “I Don’t Hate You”
Light travels from its source until it hits something. Depending on what it hits, the light will either be absorbed or bounce off. To prove this, take a flashlight outside at night and point it towards the sky. If you look closely, you will see the beam of light travels up and out of the atmosphere until it hits a star. The star reflects the light back to you. On a cloudy night, the light is absorbed by the clouds. However, some of the light reflects off of the clouds but it is much less. We know that light travels at a speed of 299 792 458 m / s. This means that the light leaves its source and travels away from it. The light that left the source continues to travel through space even if the source is removed. Continue reading “Properties of Light and Chanukah”
By now, you are probably quite close to being ready for the holidays. You’ve bought the gifts. The menu is planned and preparations are well underway. Many people like to remind us to remember the reason for the season. It’s not about the tree or the lights. Nor is it about Santa and the reindeer. It’s about the birth of Jesus. So let’s examine this a little. Continue reading “The Reason for the Season”
What does it mean to learn from the world around you? There are amazing things going on every minute of every day. They happen right where you are whether you acknowledge them or not. The creator of the universe is constantly doing things for our direct benefit, even if one doesn’t believe He exists. There are the obvious things we thank Him for all the time. These might include our lives, our families, or the food we eat. But there are so many more things going on around us from which we can learn. Continue reading “Learn From the World Around You”