Compassionate Convenience

My sister and I were walking home from the bus stop and preparing to go our usual route home. However, the route we normally took was obstructed. The only way to get to my street was to walk all the way to the end of the street and around. That’s a lot of walking.

As my sister and I looked around, stewing over what to do, a construction worker noticed our hesitance.

“Are you trying to get across?” he yelled from the road.

“Yeah,” we shouted back.

“Okay, then I’ll stop traffic for you,” he said calmly, as if it was nothing at all.

My sister and I looked at each other in disbelief and expressed our utmost thanks to the man.

“No problem,” he said, and we crossed without mishap.

 

Thanks are in order to all those compassionate construction workers out there!

A Much-Needed Brownie

It was just a regular school day, and I had no reason to think that my usual routine would be any different. I started counting on my fingers: after Navi was lunch, then Biology, Business, Writer’s Craft, and English.

I was sitting in a classroom minding my own business, when I saw my sister wheeling through the hallway with a smile on her face. She saw me through the window, and her face lit up. In a moment she was in the door. “Hey, sis,” she said. “I brought you a brownie!”
I felt a smile start to form on my face that could rival hers. It was so unexpected, and yet it was just what I needed. I was so impressed by her utter thoughtfulness.

I couldn’t eat it right away, so when anyone asked me about the box I was carrying, I replied, “My sister gave it to me!” and beamed when people responded, “That was so sweet of her!”

So thank you, sis!

 

Just because

Yesterday, I saw something my brother had been wanting for a long long while on sale, literally across the street from my school. I offered to pick it up for him, and collected the money. I told him I’d get it today if I could, or by Monday if not. Getting sick and spending lunch in the office was not part of the plan. (When is it?) I knew I could to it another day, but I always feel better when the easy to-do’s are crossed off my list right away. I spotted a friend coming into the office to deal with something else, and on impulse, I asked her if she wouldn’t mind picking it up for me.

It was a serious long shot, and I double checked that she didn’t mind when she said yes. But she confirmed my instructions, went out, and came back ten minutes later with the item, with the receipt and change like I’d asked for. So that’s one point for agreeing so well, one point for making it not feel like a big deal, one point for checking my instructions, one point for being fast, and 10 points for getting the job done properly. I was so appreciative, and she really helped make my brother’s day. It’s nice to know people are looking out for you.

Literally Running for the Mitzvah

On the bus home this afternoon, I became aware of a commotion. Two girls had gotten off earlier than their usual spot, and the other riders wanted to know if the twins’ older sister was coming too.

“No,” she said. So why had they gotten off, and in such a hurry? “(Classmate) left her phone on the bus. They wanted to give it back to her. So off they ran, three blocks I think, and four back.

Kol HaKavod!

A lesson in judgement

I found this from something I wrote two years ago and decided that it’s never too late to pass it on.

My brother has been recently doing an experiment on me- he says the word exam, and sees how much I yell at him.

This morning, he innocently asked “Are your exams today?”

I launched at him, and began a tirade, only to hear him say, “I know you can’t be late, so I just wanted to make sure I was ready.”

Good news

After a bad day today, I davened, as I often do, for good news.

“Please G-d, good news! Any Good News!”

Considering I was thinking more along the lines of Moshiach, world peace (the same thing, really) or something else epic, I didn’t really connect this teffilah with the call from my brother until now.

He mentioned a CD I loved, that I wasn’t able to get a personal copy of, and asked me if I’d like a free copy. No joke. I still don’t know how, but he was able to get a few. Not what I wanted, but it comforted me greatly.

Maybe you could call this just coincidence. Maybe G-d didn’t personally pull the strings this time, and I’ll never know for sure. But it reminded me of all the times where He has.

Impact

A week or two ago, I was walking through the neighborhood when two little girls passed by on bikes. The second fell off about three feet past me. Concerned, especially since she might have fallen swerving past me (though I was nowhere close), I went back to see if she was ok.

Her sister told me that she was fine, and the girl sprang to her feet. All was well, but as left, I mentioned that I knew someone who even with a helmet, nearly smashed his skull open riding a bike. Not the most encouraging or forceful message, and I wasn’t surprised when they just walked on. I wished I could have done a better job.

Or could I have? Today, when walking along a nearby route, I saw two girls biking down a hill, with helmets. And I’m 95% sure they were the same people.

Yom Ha’Zikaron

We just watched a video of the funeral of one of the soldiers who was killed this summer during the war. One soldier. One soldier, a huge void in the world. And there are sixty six more. And all the civilians. And the people who’ve died to terror attacks, unspeakable tragedies that should never have happened.

If G-d allowed it to happen, then it must be good. Why does it hurt so much?

For me, it’s not just human pain, but guilt. These are the pains before Moshiach, but they are not inevitable. They are to wake us up and bring us together. If we were already there, the pain we now feel, the pain of mothers and fathers and sisters and fiancees and brothers and wives and children, might not have happened.

Maybe this is what G-d intended. Guilt, however crushing, is not the answer.

All we need to do is to remember the pain. Remember how we feel when our nation is attacked. Remember that pain every time you forget the value a single soul has. Remember this pain EVERY TIME you encounter another Jew. Treat them as though the fate of the world, the fate of every human being, rests on how you treat this person.

Because it does.