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Section:  Avodah   Category: Innocent Observations
A Beggar With Nerve

This morning by Shacharis, Shmoneh Esrei took me a bit longer than usual. While I was still davening and the Shaliach Tzibur was saying Chazaras HaShatz, a person barged in to Shul to collect tzedaka. He was making a lot of noise with his change and his gruff pitch to each Mispalel. Then, as I was still clearly still davening Shmoneh Esrei, he got to me. Despite that my eyes were closed and I was shuckling, he jingled his change in my face and started mumbling about giving him Tzedaka. He didn't go away that fast. I was very tempted to open my eyes to see who he was so I could know to who never give, ever again.

Then the hypocrisy struck me. Here I was standing before Hashem asking him to help me. My Shmoneh Esrei took longer than usual. Why? Because while davening I came up with an idea to boost sales of my struggling business. So there I was standing before Hashem the King of all Kings and the owner of all riches, asking for a donation among other things, yet at the same time I was completely ignoring him because I was thinking I had my own way to make money without his help.

If I was angry at the collector could you imagine how Hashem felt about me? I hope Hashem closed His eyes and didn't get a glimpse of me the big Michutzaf, in order to make sure He never gives me a donation ever again. Maybe Hashem sent this fellow since He knew I wasn't davening anyway. Maybe He was telling me that giving small change to a person in need will yield a better return than my brilliant ideas that were hatched while I am supposed to be asking the real source of all good ideas and parnassa for His help.

The Rosh in Orchos Chaim says we need to ask Hashem forgiveness for asking for forgiveness in Slach Lanu without kavana. By the same token we should probably ask Hashem for forgiveness for dreaming about our parnassa instead of concentrating on Bareich Aleinu. And maybe we should also have a little more pity for the person lowering himself to ask us for help, no matter when or where, even if we are not in a position to give him that moment.

RELATED ARTICLES:chutzpa  observation  shmoneh esrei  tzedaka

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