Showing posts from September 28, 2014

The Two Facebook Friends I Lost This Summer: Finding the Balance Between the Universal and the Particular©

The Two Facebook Friends I Lost This Summer: 
Finding the Balance Between the Universal and the Particular© Rabbi David Baum, Congregation Shaarei Kodesh Second Day of Rosh Hashanah 5775
I want to begin today by telling you about two friends I lost this summer.Let me just make something clear – these two guys are very much alive and healthy, and may they both be written in the book of life!I lost these friends on Facebook, they both De-Friended me over the summer.
My first friend is named Shmuel.We were friends in high school and connected through our synagogue youth group, USY.Shmuel was the head of the social action/Tikkun Olam committee and it was his passion.He organized food baggings for our local Jewish Family Services, volunteering opportunities at nursing homes, and other projects – he was a real blessing for us.We kept in touch after high school, but we drifted apart.Six years ago, I ran into Shmuel in New York, but he looked a lot different.He wasn’t wearing a kippah anymore, nor…

Hope and Action: Weathering This Summer's Storms©

Hope and Action:  Weathering This Summer's Storms© By Rabbi David Baum Congregation Shaarei Kodesh, First Day of Rosh Hashanah 5775
Let me set the scene for you.  It was Labor Day, just a couple of weeks ago.  My wife had to work, so I had the kids alone.
Like many over the holiday, we decided to go to the beach. The beach we went to in Boca was interesting in the following way – you have to walk a great distance to get to the ocean. The weather was absolutely beautiful – sunny, hot but with a nice breeze, and not a cloud in the sky. We built sand castles together, went swimming together, played and laughed. 
Suddenly, out of nowhere, a dark cloud developed right over us, and it started pouring rain. Everyone around us fled to the street, some collecting their belongings, and some leaving them. 

There we were, the three of us, alone on the beach, and I had a decision to make. 
Here’s my question – if you were in my ‘sandals’, standing there with your children, unprepared for the onslaugh…