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Section:  Avodah   Category: Innocent Observations
Well Connected To The Lollipop Man
Imagine a small child going to Shul with his father.  His father puts on his tallis, opens up his siddur, and starts to pour his heart out in tefila.  The child is thinking, oh my poor father!  Look what he has to go through to get his lollipop.  If only he had my connections.  Then he walks over to the lollipop man, his old friend by now, and gets his lollipop, the color of his choice.  A real genius this kid.  If only I had connections like him!

As the madness picks up steam year after year, I always wondered what our gedolim are thinking, as they devote hours and hours of their precious time playing along with people's rather empty material ambitions.  I don't have "protektzia" and even if I did I probably wouldn't ask, but this analogy answers the question, at least enough to satisfy my own wonderment.

I wanted to be the lollipop man in Shul after I got married.  There is nothing like being able to dispense a dose instant happiness to a pure innocent child.  What's more is that the child wants and needs his lolly, so better he come to the spiritual confines of the Bais HaKnesses rather than fight for it in the street or slip it into his pocket while the grocer turn the other way.  Besides as the kids get older and hungrier you can coax them into opening a siddur before they get their lolly.

We sometimes have trouble seeing past our great "lollypop men" and are unable to clearly see Shamayim, the real source of all bracha.  And maybe our ambitions are not exactly things that we should aspire to.  But far better for us "children" to think that a big tzaddik holds the keys to our success rather than the more conventional thinking of, "I control my own destiny and can steal or cheat my way to riches".  Once we've entered the "Kodesh Penima" we are at least safely off the "streets", and a lot of love and patience can nurture us and help us grow up.  We can be exposed to real kedusha.  We can even be coaxed into committing to Tefila B'Tzibbur, Zemiros, and maybe even a bit of learning along the way.

One thing I can tell you for sure, Hashem provides every generations with the right leaders to guide them.  Our gedolim are not naive.  They are the great leaders of our confused generation and they know exactly how to guide us with their huge hearts and infinite wisdom.
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