Toras Avigdor Junior
Don’t be a Looter
The boys in Rav Lernershteigen’s class listened closely as he talked about the concept of the Nozir from parshas Naso. It was fascinating and everyone was imagining what it would be like to go for such a long time without a haircut.
“Why don’t we have Nezirim nowadays?” asked Dudi. “I would love to be a Nozir. I would grow my hair so long and then I could cut it and give it to a person who doesn’t have hair so he can wear it and not look different.”
Rav Lernershteigen smiled. “Well, Dudi,” he said. “We don’t have Nezirim nowadays because we don’t have a Beis Hamikdash and we’re all tomei. A Nozir has to bring korbonos at the end of his nezirus, which isn’t possible nowadays. But even when Moshiach comes bimheira byomeinu, a Nozir can’t just give his hair away to someone, even as a chessed. The hair gets burned underneath the pot that the Nozir’s korbon is cooked in.”
“They burn the hair?” asked Shmulik in amazement.
“Why would they do that?” added Dudi.
“Well,” answered Rav Lernershteigen, “that is part of the Avodah of a Nozir. But we’re out of time for today – let’s continue talking about it tomorrow!”
At that moment, the bell rang and Shmulik and Dudi grabbed their backpacks and ran out of the classroom to catch the bus home, still imagining what it would be like if the streets of Yerushalayim were filled with heilige Nezirim.
On the #2 Egged bus
Shmulik and Dudi sat next to each other talking happily as the bus made its way towards their homes.
“I spoke on the phone with my cousins, Yitzy and Shimmy Greenbaum, yesterday,” Dudi was saying. “They live in America, and they said that crazy goyim were protesting a few blocks away from their house!”
“Wow, what happened?” asked Shmulik.
“It was nuts!” said Dudi. “They said that hundreds of protesters smashed the windows of a big store, stole all of the stuff inside, and lit the store on fire!”
“What crazy meshugoyim,” Shmulik said. I can’t believe there are so many terrible people in this world that would just go and steal things that aren’t theirs!”
Dudi smiled at his friend. “Shmulik, every ganev steals things that aren’t his. If it was his, it wouldn’t be stealing!”
Shmulik laughed, but stopped suddenly at the familiar voice behind him. “Actually boys, we must be careful not to steal, even things that belong to us!”
The boys jumped up at the sound of Rav Lernershteigen’s voice. “Rebbe, we didn’t see you! Please take my seat!” Dudi said, giving his place to his Rebbe who thanked him with a warm smile.
“How could we steal something that belongs to us?” asked Shmulik, confused. “If it’s mine, it’s not stealing.”
“Boys, I guess you don’t have to wait for tomorrow to hear the answer to your question about the Nozir’s hair. You see, the Gemara tells us the story of a man who saw his reflection in a pool of water and he noticed how beautiful his hair was. It made him feel proud, and that bothered him. His body was a gift given to him to help him serve Hashem and he had no business feeling like it was his to be proud of. Because of that, he immediately decided to become a Nozir so that he could burn all his beautiful hair for Hashem after the nezirus ended.
“Rav Avigdor Miller says this story teaches us that everything that we have in this world really belongs to Hashem and it is only ‘ours’ to use to serve Hashem. Even if we go to the store and buy something with our own money, even though we paid for it, it’s still Hashem’s. If we walk out thinking that it’s ours now, then Rav Miller says that we are just as bad as the crazy goyim who break into stores and steal everything inside!”
Later, at the dinner table
“Thank you so much!” said Dudi as Mommy put a plate of schnitzel and mashed potatoes in front of him. “It looks delicious!”
“You’re welcome!” smiled Mommy, as she joined the family and they all made brachos and began to eat.
Dudi was about to quickly say a brocha and begin eating himself, when he remembered the looters and what Rav Lernershteigen said about the Nozir. Dudi then thought to himself, “I am not a looter at a riot. This is not my food – this is Hashem’s delicious food that He is giving me permission to eat so that I will have energy to serve him.”
Have A Wonderful Shabbos