"Moshiach is ready to come now-our part is to increase in acts of goodness and kindness" -The Rebbe

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Moshe Holtzberg's message

The news of the capture of Gavriel and Rivka Holtzberg’s child, Moshe, and then his miraculous rescue, was particularly poignant for my family, for we too have a Moishe’le (an affectionate way of saying Moshe), and in fact, he is only around seven months older. He too has brownish hair and looks, well, cute. It was all so real.

As a survivor of terror, Moshe Holtzberg is unfortunately not unique. However, his case is unusual in that his dramatic liberation was widely publicized by all the major media outlets, making him perhaps the most famous child victim of terror in history. Likewise, his heartrending cries for his mother at the commemoration service for his parents in the
Shul in Mumbai were captured on video and publicized on prime-time news. ­­­­This made him the poster child for child victims of terror worldwide, and a prominent reminder of the reality of their plight.

What does this mean for those of us who live so comfortably in the western world, where terrorism is generally something we read about in the news, and not an immediate concern?

Of course, those in a position to provide any assistance to such orphans should do so.

Beyond that, let us derive from this the importance of cultivating the quality of gratitude to G–d in our personal lives, and for our most precious possession—our children. Never should we take them for granted.

G–d has entrusted us with them, and we ought to fulfill our duty to Him and them faithfully. Let us value them, and make them feel valued.

Not only should we realize how blessed we are to have children, we should also realize how blessed our children are to have parents. For even more than parents need children, children need parents. Let us strive to be the best parents that we can.

First and foremost, this involves setting a sterling example of the noble values and refined lifestyle that we preach to them.

On a more direct level this involves spending more time with our children, making them feel loved and special, and guiding them gently but firmly on the proper path of fear of Hashem. This is the true victory over the terrorists and their ilk.

Moreover, as King Dovid, the sweet singer of the Jewish people, declared: “Out of the mouths of babes and infants you have found strength to destroy the enemy and avenger” (
Tehillim 8:2). It is through raising Jewish children as the Torah teaches that the Jewish people prevail over their enemies.

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