Messages From A Tzedakah Collector

It was a morning like many others, Shacharis at ~6:00 am, followed by Doing-the-Daf and then heading home for a quick breakfast before hitting the keyboard.

As I was leaving, a smiling, familiar face Tzedakah collector was in the lobby, having just left the Yeshiva minyan. I reached into my pocket to hand him some change and he said that he thought I gave him something at the earlier minyan. I told him I was pretty sure that I hadn’t and continued to extend my hand with the change.

He said that he wanted to make sure that I was giving it with a Lev Shelem (a full heart), even if I was mistaken and had already given. It would be a shame to have to come back as a gilgul for some mis-collected small change. Wow! I told him that I was ok with giving again, even if I gave earlier.

As I was walking to my car, the idea of giving with a Lev Shelem really hit me. I have no problem giving Tzedakah to the collectors on a weekly basis and I feel like I have a relationship with many of them. But a Lev Shelem. Could I really say I was consciously giving at that level?

So here’s a task I can work on. It’s a small amount. I don’t mind giving. I’m already giving regularly as per the Rambam. But now I can work on giving with Lev Shalem, with complete committment, with joy. I can’t wait till tomorrow.

Once in a while you get shown the light. In the strangest of places if you look at it right.