The Day I Received a Message on Simplicity

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The Day I Received a Message on Simplicity

Karen Berg
January 2, 2016

The Rav taught me something years ago when he said, "When people come to you and say things, listen carefully because everybody's giving you a message. If there is one thing that is so important, it is to really listen, and listen well.”

Once, I was sitting at a dinner and the waiter came to our table, eager to talk with us. As far I know, this waiter had never studied anything spiritual, and certainly not Kabbalah.

But he started telling us a story: "Five years ago, I left my family in the Ukraine. And even though it is painful, I know that we're going to be together again because I remember I read that right before the Messiah comes, Elijah the Prophet will come and take the hearts of the children back to their parents, and the hearts of the parents will go back to their children.”

As I sat there with my two boys, I thought, “Isn't that interesting? But why is he telling us this particular story?”

Before I could finish my thought, the waiter continued, "You know, God is very simple."

“Very simple?” I asked.

He repeated, "Yes! God is very simple.”

“What do you mean, simple?” I said, my curiosity piqued.

He replied, "Being with God is simple. You’re with God when you're filled with love and kindness, like when you look at other people and ask yourself how you can help them or what is it you can do for them. You’re with God when you wake up in the morning and say, 'I feel good inside. I feel hope. Yes, I make mistakes. Yes, I fall. And yes, I have to do things because I'm not perfect. If I was perfect, I wouldn't be here.’ When I do all these things and have these feelings, then I know I'm with God because God is simple.

“But when I have those other feelings – you know, like why does this person have something and I don’t, or how come I'm a victim, or how come I can't do things like other people, or how come nobody is noticing me – well, that’s when I'm not with God."

As I listened, I thought, “As simple as this all sounds, it is very deep.” Especially now, at this time, with all that is going on in the world, this simplicity is so important.