July 20, 2024
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July 20, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

Healthy self-confidence can make a big difference in our lives. In this week’s Torah portion, (Num. 13:31) a lack of self-confidence prevented the people from rightly moving into the land that God gave to them and caused them to have to wander for 40 years in the desert. We too can bring ourselves to great places in life by developing our self-confidence.

In our story, a kid shows another what self-confidence can do.

Sweet Charity

Barry was home alone when he heard the doorbell ring. He ran downstairs to get it and opened the door, but no one was there. At least that’s what he thought at first. Then he saw a scared-looking younger kid squeezed against the corner railing of his front porch looking like he wished he could slip between two of the bars. He was holding a clipboard and a colorful cardboard box.

“Yeah? You rang?” Barry asked.

“Uh… um… you… youwannabuysomecandyforcharity?” the kid blurted out.

“Huh?”

The boy, looking even more scared, handed Barry one of the flyers he was carrying. Barry read it.

“Do I want to buy some candy for charity? Why didn’t you say so? Hmm, let’s see, I’ll take one of those,” he said, pointing to a picture of one of the colorful candy bars displayed on the flier and pulling a dollar out of his wallet.

“Y… you mean you really want to buy one?” the kid asked, the first hint of light glinting in his darkened eyes.

“Sure. Why not?” Barry asked.

“It’s just that you’re the first person who said ‘yes’ to me all day,” the kid said with a cautious smile as he dug the candy bar out from the full box he’d been holding under his arm.

“Really? Gee, that’s too bad,” Barry said as he unwrapped the bar and took a bite. “But, you know, I’m not surprised,” he added between chews. Noticing the kid’s confused look, he went on. “If you want to sell anything, you have to believe in yourself.”

“Myself?”

“Yeah. You have to believe in yourself and in what you’re doing. That’s called self-confidence—feeling like you’re good and you’re doing something good. When I opened the door you looked like you were afraid you were bothering me or something.”

“Um, that’s what I thought,” the kid nodded in agreement.

“But why?” Barry asked, throwing up his hands. “You were doing me, and everyone you call on, the biggest favor in the world.”

“I was… am?”

“Sure!” Barry took another bite of candy and grinned. “Absolutely! Not only were you offering me an opportunity to do a good deed and give charity to the orphanage you’re collecting for, you were also offering me this delicious treat to pick up my day. What could be better than that?”

“Wow.”

“Listen, from now on remember what I just told you whenever you knock on someone’s door and I promise you you’ll make tons more sales. Okay?”

“Okay!” The kid nodded enthusiastically. Barry was about to close the door, when the boy took a confident step forward.

“So… since I’m doing you such a big favor, maybe you’ll take two?” he asked with a wink.

“Now you’ve got it! And got me!” Barry clapped his hands and laughed. Pulling out another dollar bill, he sent the smiling kid off, a little bit richer in money… and a whole lot richer in life.


Nesanel Yoel Safran is a writer, chef and a teacher/student of Jewish spirituality. He blends these assorted vocations on his blog, Soul Foodie, where you can join him on mystical cooking adventures and glean practical wisdom for the kitchen – and for living. https://soulfoodiecom.wordpress.com/

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