The Human Side of the Story

For the week ending 29 November 2008 / 2 Kislev 5769

Tears of Joy

by Rabbi Mendel Weinbach zt'l
The Color of HeavenArtscroll

Loud weeping pierced the midnight air at the Western Wall. A middle-aged man was crying in a manner that made all those around him wonder what was wrong.

Among those present was Rabbi Elimelech Firer, head of the "Ezra Lemarpei" medical aid organization, who is highly respected for his medical advice. Together with him was a visiting philanthropist, and the two made an interesting pact. First, Rabbi Firer would approach the weeping man and ask if he needed medical assistance. If the reply was in the negative, the philanthropist would approach him with an offer of financial help.

To both offers the response was that he was not in need of anything because G-d had provided him with all his needs.

When he was finally pressed to reveal why he was crying, he reported that the night before he had married off the last of his 12 children and he had come to the Kotel to express his thanks to G-d, just as he come to the Kotel in earlier years to pray for Heavenly assistance for his children finding suitable marriage partners.

"Should one come to the Kotel only when he needs help and not when he needs to thank G-d", he asked. "And when one comes to thank for so much kindness can he hold himself back from crying?"

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