Well I finally finished reading The Committed Life, by Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis, and I can honestly say I think I'm a better person for it. She touched on many areas in my life where I needed to work on and encouraged me to seek out YHVH's way to fix it. She inspired me to dive even deeper into learning the "Torah way". Maybe it's because I'm new to Torah Observance but she opened my eyes to things that I had never put much thought into.
The book consists mostly of short stories. Which she explains is the way the Jewish Sages teach lessons. We can see that to be true just by turning to the Bible. Yeshua told many stories, parables, that were for the purpose of teaching. Rebbetzin Jungreis opens up her heart and discusses the death of her father and her husband. In doing so she allows the reader to really connect to her stories. She paints a picture with her words that makes you feel as if you're right there with her. She touches on many different areas with chapters on: inviting G-d into your life, responsibility/accountability, charity-tzedukah, peace, prayer, and forgiveness just to name a few. This is a book I definitely recommend for others to read.
“But even as the wisdom of the Torah sustained me in the past, I knew that it would enable me to make this new transition as well.[…] To be sure Life is cyclic. At one point or another, every one of us will be confronted by difficult and painful challenges. Our reactions and how well we cope will depend upon our spiritual resources. Please do not consider however, that it is only in times of crisis that we require G-d’s guiding hand. In moments of triumph, in the hour of our greatest achievement, we need him as well. Without G-d, we are left empty. Our successes leave us with a taste of ashes in our mouths and we sense that there must be something more to life… but what?
There is a charming story about an exchange that took place between a rabbi and a little boy.
“Tell me, my son,” the rabbi asked, “where is G-d?”
“That’s easy,” came the ready reply. “G-d is everywhere.”
“No, my son,” the rabbi said, “G-d is not everywhere. G-d is only where man allows him to enter.”
It is for this reason that I have written this book--- so that we might open our hearts to G-d, invite Him into our lives and discover the blessings that will enhance our days, the blessings that are our rightful spiritual inheritance.”- Epilogue pg 333*
*Jungreis, Rebbetzin Esther. The Committed Life: Principles for Good Living from Our Timeless past. New York: Cliff Street, 1998. Print