The Toy Store by Prof. Gerald August

Nov 30th, 2010 by Rabbi Simcha Weinberg in Holidays
A few years ago, the week before Chanukah, I went to a toy store in midtown Manhattan to buy a gift for my seven-year-old niece. However, I made the mistake of going at lunchtime. So did a lot of other people. After I picked up the toy, I went to the lines for the cash registers. And the shortest line had 14 people in it.

I did not have patience for such a wait, but there I was. What should I do, standing there?  I was looking around at the different people giving up their lunch hour and standing on line for 15 minutes to buy toys.

And it hit me.  These people were spending time and money on other people. Parents were buying presents for their children.   Uncles and aunts were buying presents for their nephews and nieces. Friends and neighbors were buying presents for the sons and daughters of their friends. I saw lines of people doing good deeds.

I realized I was standing not only in a toy store, but in a sacred space. This thought banished my impatience and I stood waiting in line with a calm I had never experienced in this situation.

Perhaps the same will happen to you.

Happy Chanukah