I was sitting rigidly on a stone bench, perfectly miserable in beautiful Nachlaot. It should have been a great time for me, being in Israel and all that. Yet, I had made the mistake of renting what had been touted as a very small apartment, but what turned out to be a storage room converted without much insulation into something to be rented to unsuspecting tourists. Not a good thing for someone who craves warmth and heat as do I. Unfortunately, having paid the money up front, I was stuck in that living space for the next four weeks. I ended up spending more time outdoors trying to soak up the few weak rays of sun rather than sit in the damp coldness inside. Did I mention the mold that grew there, too?
Yes, the square in Nachlaot, that year, with its stone benches and lemon trees was definitely a better place to sit and so I sat there, not a study in elation. On that random afternoon, a woman with a warm smile passed by, backed up and made her way to me. “Shalom,” she said, “and where will you be for Purim?” Huh, thought I, as I stammered my reply, “Um, I have no plans, yet.” “Well that’s settled then, you’ll come to me.” And without much further ado, she gave me her address and a sunny smile and walked on into her day. I sat there smiling, for I realized I had just experienced the warmth of true Jerusalem sunlight. A stranger with random kindness melting away the ice around those chilled to our hearts. Purim, by the way, was great.
Aish HaTorah has a wonderful website, spreading Torah light and values in streams throughout the web. Equally amazing is Ruth Housman who logs onto Aish.com regularly. First time I saw her comment on an article, I thought “aw, shucks, how nice.” Her precise thoughts and praise were appreciated. Then I began to notice something amazing. Ruth Housman, bless her soul and one day I hope to meet her, reads all the Aish HaTorah articles. Thinks about them and tries to relate to them. And then goes ahead and spends time putting in a positive comment. I kid you not, the woman scrolls the articles, reads them, peruses them, thinks of them, and then carves out time in her day to give praise to authors. Another ray of sunlight in our world.
Have you shed a sunbeam on a person today? Have you warmed a cold heart yet? Why don’t you? Only that can give us the real Global Warming we need.