Dvar Torah Elul By Rabbi Shapiro – ולהן אתה הולך- where are you going?
As we begin the month of Elul we are reminded of the famous acronym for the letters that spell Elul, AlefLamed-Vov-Lamed: Ani L’dodi V’dodi Li. The word “Ani” is translated as “I.” But there’s another way to translate Ani. The word B’ni, my son, is a contraction of two words, Haben Sheli, my son. Similarly then, the word Ani is a contraction of the words Ha’un Sheli – my “un”. What is the definition of the word “Ha’un?” In Pirkei Avos (3:1) it states, “ul’un atah holech,” ולהן אתה הולך and in which direction are you going? The word “un,” then, is a direction. Ha’un Sheli can be translated as “my direction.” Now we can understand this acronym in a beautiful way: Ani – Ha’un Sheli – If my direction, my focus is – L’dodi – to serve Hashem, then Hashem is “V’dodi Li,” Hashem will be with us to guide and protect us. When we demonstrate through our actions that our direction and focus is to bring the glory of Hashem into this world and to help His children, then we can rest assured that V’dodi Li – Hashem is with us, supporting us and guiding us. everyone that he I sold drinks on Shabbos. I lost my cool and took a thick stick and hit the Gentile. The Gentile collapsed to the ground and died! Now I was in shambles. But I composed myself, and took out a Tehilim, and began to daven to Hashem to direct me to the right course of action. After finishing Tehilim a thought came to my mind. Not far from me, there was a Wonder Rebbe in Kerestir. I decided to hide the Gentile under a bed, and as soon Shabbos would be over, travel to Kerestir. On Motzei Shabbos, I came to Kerestir just as the Rebbe finished making Havdalah. I ran over to the Rebbe hysterically. The Rebbe tried to calm me down and brought me into his room. I told the Rebbe the whole story. The Rebbe listened and then went into a deep trance. After a few minutes, the Rebbe awoke, went to his closet, and took out 2 coins. He then put then over the candles from Motzei Shabbos, said a blessing over them, and handed them to me. The Rebbe instructed me to put these coins in the hands of the Gentile and say, “Yeshaya Ben Moshe, the Talmid of Reb Hershel from Liska, and the Sanzer Rav, orders you to pick yourself up and go home!” I thanked the Rebbe and ran home to do what the Rebbe had told me to do. I placed the coins in the hand of the dead Gentile and Lo and behold, he began to move and then got up on his feet! I politely told the Gentile that he fell and hurt himself, and that he should go home now, as it was very late. The Gentile went home, and his wife confronted him. “Again! you spent our last money on drinks when we are starving from hunger” she said. They got into an argument, and after a brief altercation, the Gentile fell to the floor and died. I heard what had happened, and quickly traveled to Kerestir to tell the Rebbe, and thank him for the wondrous miracle that he had performed. The Rebbe brushed aside the miracle, and said sternly, “You still killed a Gentile on Shabbos, which even though it was unintentional, you still sinned. For you to rectify the sin, you must go in exile for one year. I also forbid you to tell this story to anyone as long as I live.” I thanked the Rebbe for saving my life and promised to do as I was told. R’ Yitzchok concluded by telling the Chassidim: “Now that the Rebbe has passed away I can finally tell over the story”. Rav Aaron Bleich and Rav Mendel Rubin were live witnesses who retold this story many times.
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