November 28, 2019
by Tzvi Schnee
In psychology, the word resiliency has taken on an integral meaning, in regard to a positive quality that allows for the individual to successfully navigate the circumstances in life that would otherwise prove too stressful to bear. It is probably too technical of a word, in that respect, to use in regard to having a challenging time waking up in the morning. Every so often, my motivation is deficient for the task of waking up early to start my day with eager anticipation of what G-d has in store for me on that particular day.
This morning, I needed to wake someone else up – an indigent person who decided to get an extra hour’s shut-eye in the small corridor where my apartment, as well as my neighbor’s apartment is located; inasmuch that I knew this person, because he occasionally knocks on my door for assistance, it was not like I had to rudely awaken a total stranger. However, I waited until my neighbor opened his door, necessitating the urgency to wake up the sleeping person, because my neighbor has a physical handicap, often requiring the use of a wheel chair; so, the corridor needed to be cleared. Meanwhile, before this occured, I prepared a small breakfast of tea, banana, and hot rice cereal for B. Then, when all of this transpired, I sent him on his way.
It was a precarious situation that could have gone sour. Yet, thanks to Heaven above, everything worked out o.k. In any case, I realized that I was obligated to thank G-d for giving me the opportunity to help out a homeless person on Thanksgiving. I didn’t even half to go anywhere. The mitzvah (opportunity for a good deed) literally landed at my doorstep, and it prevailed upon me to provide in a dignified manner for the recipient, myself, and my neighbor. The recipient, because I didn’t send him away empty; myself, inasmuch that I was stern, yet, kind. And, for my neighbor, because I acted immediately, with a raised, yet, controlled tone of voice, making sure to wake up B. for the sake of my neighbor.
Yet, I do not mention any of this for applause; only to demonstrate the teaching that there are certain mitzvot (good deeds) that are individually designed for a specific person to enact when given the opportunity. There may be only a moment’s notice, when about to pass by someone who asks for help on the street; rather than thinking that someone else may help out, it is better to show eagerness to fulfill the mitzvah. The reward that you will receive may even be the opportunity to do another mitzvah, somewhere down the road; and, eventually, G-d will reward your kindness.