27 Iyar 5781 / Sunday, May 09, 2021 | Torah Reading: Bamidbar
 
dot  Add to favorites   dot  Set as homepage  
 
   
    Create an account    |    Sign in
  
    My Account     Orders History     Help
 
 
  My Country:  
  United States   
 
   Language:  
  English   
 
   My Currency:  
  US Dollar   
 
   
Home Page Torah Portion Spirituality and Faith Foundations of Judaism Inspirational Stories Family & Daily Life Holidays and Fast Days Israel and Society
   Heart of the Parsha     Chassidic Pearls     Chana’s Blessing     Parsha Beams             
 
  More  
 
 
 
Stories from the Baal Shem Tov  
 
HomeTorah PortionStories from the Baal Shem TovVayakhel: Iyov's Penny
 
  Advanced Search
   Articles
 
   Search
 
            
 

Vayakhel: Iyov's Penny    

Vayakhel: Iyov's Penny



A line of people wound its way from the door of the holy Baal Shem Tov’s office. Many stood in line to seek advice and blessings from the holy tzaddik...

 



Parshat VaYakhel
 
 
"Take from yourselves a portion for God, everyone whose heart motivates him shall bring it." (Shemot 35:5)
 
* * *
 
A line of people wound its way from the door of the holy Baal Shem Tov’s office. Many stood in line to seek advice and blessings from the holy tzaddik.
 
One of those who waited was Reb Zissel, a simple man with very little in this world. He humbly asked the Baal Shem Tov for a blessing so that he wouldn’t have to live in poverty and depend on the charity of others.
 
The Baal Shem Tov listened intently to Reb Zissel's pleading. After a long silence, the Baal Shem Tov said: “I wish to help you, but it is not within my power to do so. Heaven prevents me from granting such a blessing.”
 
But Reb Zissel was not so easily dissuaded. “Please Rebbe,” cried Reb Zissel, “I have traveled so far and waited so long, isn’t there even the smallest blessing you could grant me?”
 
The Baal Shem Tov sat quietly for a moment, but could only respond that there was nothing he could do.
 
Then, suddenly, the Baal Shem Tov stood up and walked over to his bookshelf and removed a sefer (holy book). It was the Talmud Baba Batra. He took a book off the shelf. He opened it at random, looked closely at the open page and read the following words: “He who takes a pruta (penny) from Iyov (Job) will be blessed.”
 
The Baal Shem Tov turned to Reb Zissel, who stood in respectful silence by the tzaddik's desk. “Reb Zissel, these words have deep meaning: Each Jew has an instinctive desire to help his fellow Jew. That desire is born from the source of his soul, which is an absolute part of God. Just as God created this physical world out of His selfless kindness, so too each Jewish soul desires to bestow that kindness onto others. This statement in the Talmud teaches us that a worthy man, who dispenses charity and kindness to others, has the power to bestow his blessing of success upon the tzedaka (charity) that he gives, as well as to the recipient who will benefit from the gift. Now, let me think, if I know of such a man?”
 
At that moment the Baal Shem Tov thought of Reb Shabsai Meir, a well known Baal Tzedaka (philanthropist), who lived in the city of Brod. Not only did Reb Shabsai give generous amounts of charity to the needy, but he did so with the sincerest feelings of “Ahavat Yisrael”, of true love for his fellow Jew. And even more so, Reb Shabsai prayed fervently that the Almighty continue to bless him with wealth only so that he could continue to give generously, and that the recipients of his giving would themselves be blessed with wealth and success. The Heavenly court saw Reb Shabsai’s kindness and heard his sincere prayers, and indeed granted all his wishes. As time passed, Reb Shabsai was blessed with increasing wealth, and those who benefited from his kindness also became successful.
 
The Baal Shem Tov then said to Reb Zissel, “There is one person who can help you. Travel to the city of Brod, and seek out Reb Shabsai Meir. He has the power to help you. Ask him for a donation. The money that leaves his hand is blessed, and it bestows blessing upon all who receive it."
 
Reb Zissel thanked the Baal Shem Tov and journeyed to Brod. He spent Shabbat with Reb Shabsai and when Shabbat was over, Reb Zissel begged Reb Shabsai for a donation, which Reb Shabsai gave willingly and with a broad smile. Soon after, Reb Zissel departed Brod carrying Reb Shabsai’s donation.
 
Soon, Reb Zissel circumstances began to improve, and he never again had to depend on the charity of others again.
 
And so it was.
 
 
***
Tzvi Meir Cohn attended Yeshiva Hadar Hatorah in Crown Heights, Brooklyn after completing his university studies in Engineering and Law. While studying at the Yeshiva, he discovered a deep connection to the stories and teachings of the Baal Shem Tov. His many books about the Baal Shem Tov can be found in the Breslev Store. He can be contacted at howard@cohnpatents.com.




New Comment    New Comment
   See More Articles By Rabbi Tzvi Meir Cohn
   Read more about Stories from the Baal Shem Tov




Top of article    Top of article       Email This Article    Email This Article          Share to Facebook       Print version    Print version


 Join the distribution list Join the distribution list
 
 
  
If you would like to receive other related articles or Breslev.co.il features via e-mail, please enter your e-mail address here:

   

 Related Articles Related Articles
 
 


  0 Talkbacks for this article     

Add Your CommentAdd Your Comment    Add Your Comment    

 
 
  
In Honor of:    In Memory of:
  
 
Like What You Read?
 
Help Breslev Israel spread the light of Rebbe Nachman
across the globe, and be a partner in making a better world.
 
Click here to support Breslev.co.il
  
 
 
 Products of the Day Products of the Day
 
 
 
 
Back  1 2 3  Next
 
 
 
 
  •  
     
  •  
     
  •  
     
  •  
     
 
Back  1 2 3  Next
 
 
 Most talked about Most talked about
 
 
 
 
Up  1 2 3  Down
 
 
 Most read Most read
 
 
 
 
Up  1 2 3  Down
 
 
 Facebook Facebook
 
 
 
 Mailing List Mailing List
 
 
 
Subscribe Here:   
 
   
 

 
 



  
 
 
open toolbar