Is this not the fast I will choose? To undo the fetters of wickedness, to untie the bands of perverseness, and to let out the oppressed free, and all perverseness you shall eliminate
Is it not to share your bread with the hungry, and moaning poor you shall bring home; when you see a naked one, you shall clothe him, and from your flesh you shall not hide.
a section from isaiah is read during the yom kippur service. at the time when individuals are seeking personal atonement from the master of the universe, there is reminder that there is much to be done on this planet to address the concerns of others.
on yom kippur eve, the holiest night of the year, there is the kol nidre service. last year, when it concluded i started to walk home down venice boardwalk. it was dark and foggy. all of the business were closed. the boardwalk was populated with the occasional jogger or cyclist mixed within the homeless. for some, they may consider it a perilous journey.
i walked down the boardwalk with the goal to make it home without incident. having poor night vision, i proceeded with caution. i made it up to the venice’s famous muscle beach.
out of the darkness, my name was called. the individual approached me. i did not recognize them. they told me their name. as soon as they said it, i immediately knew who they were. it was one of my old clients. they told me they were homeless and had fallen on hard times.
this uneventful walk suddenly had meaning. i knew that there was a way i could assist this individual to obtain funds. i told them i would get in touch with them in two days and we could do something to improve their life. it all worked out. eventually, they received funds that would assist them with their housing for a substantial period of time.
in life, there are coincidences. there are times where, despite astronomical odds, things happen. sporting events on a rare occasion include a shocking upset.
this particular coincidental encounter defied odds. only one day a year do i ever talk this walk. with the poor lighting, it was even more remarkable that i was recognized. the fact we met defied imagination.
regardless of any religious connotation to the coincidence, i was in the position to help. i acted as an agent to assist with the betterment of one’s life. the timing, however, was remarkable.
in sum, inspiring words can often awaken us to take care of other’s needs.
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