How do I create a desire to emulate Hashem, when I actually don’t have such a desire?
Now the first thing is to say to yourself, either quietly or in your mind, “I would like to be meka’yeim והלכת בדרכיו. I want to walk in the ways of Hashem.” Once you said that, you have to know you’ve already made a decisive step in the right direction.
It’s remarkable what making a decision with words can mean. For example, you can say, “I want to be meka’yeim loving the Am Yisroel like Hashem does.” Once you say that, you should know you have taken a very important step in life. You’re not going to do it, that’s the trouble.
If you do it however, then Hakodosh Boruch Hu says, “You made one step, and now I’ll give you a big push,” and you’ll be surprised how far you’ll get ahead.
והתקדשתם והייתם קדושים. What does that mean? והתקדשתם – “And you should make yourself holy, והייתם קדושים – and you will become holy.” It’s a principle: אדם מקדש את עצמו מעט מקדשים אותו הרבה – “If a man makes himself kadosh, holy, even a little bit then Hakodosh Boruch Hu makes him kadosh very much.”
It’s a very important principle, and this principle you’ll find everywhere in the Torah. וראיתם אותם, look at your tzitzis, וזכרתם, and you’ll remember כל מצוות השם, all the mitzvos of Hashem. It’s a bris, it’s a promise – look at your tzitzis, your husband’s tzitzis, your brother’s tzitzis, whatever it is, look at them with the intention to be reminded of the mitzvos, and little by little, as you practice it, you’ll actually be reminded of the mitzvos whenever you see tzitzis.
ועשיתם אותם והייתם קדושים – “And you do the mitzvos, and you become holy.” By doing mitzvos you’ll become kadosh. How do you become kadosh by doing mitzvos? The answer is Hakadosh Baruch Hu rewards you. So once you’ll start in the right direction so from then on Hashem helps you. Of course if you start with a bigger amount of energy, He’ll give you a bigger push, but that’s the way to do it.
So the very first step you have to know is the step of a hypocrite. You don’t mean it. But don’t care; do it anyhow. Be a hypocrite. Say, “Hashem, I love You.” Now, you don’t love Hashem. It’s true, you don’t love Him yet. What do you love? You love ice cream. You love cake. You love watermelon. But say it anyhow. “I love You Hashem.”
Realize you made a very big step in your life if you say that. A very big step. And most people never said it once in their lives. So when you walk out of here tonight don’t lose the opportunity. Nobody should hear you; say “I love You Hashem.” Say that. It’s a tremendous achievement. At least once in your life you said that – and you don’t know what the consequences could be.
And therefore you always must start out in an insincere way; but at least you started out. Then Hakodosh Boruch Hu takes over.
TAPE # 870 (April 1992)