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BlogElul day 19: Ask

This post is part of the #blogelul project started by the inimitable Ima On (and off) the Bima. I am using it as my motivation to rejuvenate this site and get myself back into the swing of things.


blogelulThis post is part of the #blogelul project started by the inimitable Ima On (and off) the Bima. I am using it as my motivation to rejuvenate this site and get myself back into the swing of things.

For some of us, one of the most difficult things to do is to ask. Asking for for help, or advice, or even for directions requires an enormous effort.

Our reasons are many – admitting fallibility or vulnerability can raise the specter of past hurts. Pushing out of our protective shell to connect with another person can prove terrifying. The fear of rejection may be an insurmountable obstacle.
Not every inability to ask manifests as a phobia. Some of us simply hate to pick up the phone to return a call. We put off the email that requires more than a terse “yes” or “no”.
Which makes it all the more remarkable when someone breaks free of those constraints and asks anyway.

When someone does that – reaches out to you to ask for directions; to speak in a language or on a topic that is not familiar (which is itself a request for your patience and engagement); to tell you a story (which is begging of your time and attention)

In those an many other situations, we should take an extra moment to consider what it took to ask. We don’t always have to say “yes”. We don’t always have to ignore our own needs for those of another. But we do owe the requester the courtesy of a kind response.

It costs us nothing.

And in this month of Elul, when we prepare to stand before God and ask for another year, we hope that once again that the principal of midah k’neged midah – that we will be treated by the Heavenly Court in the same way we treat others here in this world.

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