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  • Writer's pictureRabbi Yonah Burr

The Path of Teshuva

ושבת עד ד' אלקיך ושמעת בקלו ככל אשר אנכי מצוך היום אתה ובניך בכל לבבך ובכל נפשך; ושב ד' אלקיך את שבותך ורחמך ושב וקבצך מכל העמים אשר הפיצך ד' אלקיך שמה; והביאך ד' אלקיך אל הארץ אשר ירשו אבתיך וירשתה והיטבך והרבך מאבתיך; ומל ד' אלהיך את לבבך ואת לבב זרעך לאהבה את ד' אלקיך בכל לבבך ובכל נפשך למען חייך.

And you will return unto Hashem and you will listen to all that I command of you today, you and your children, with all of your hearts, and all of your souls. And Hashem will return you from captivity, and have mercy on you, and gather you from all the nations that Hashem has scattered you; and Hashem will bring you to the land that your fathers have inherited, and you will inherit it, and He will be good to you, and you will be increased more than your fathers; and Hashem will circumcise your heart, and the hearts of your children, to love Hashem with all of your heart and all of your soul, in order that you shall live!

What does Hashem ‘circumcising our hearts’ mean?

The Ramban explains that this is the heavenly aid that comes to those that seek it. If we take steps in the right direction, Hashem does the rest. Hashem promises us that if we try, He will see to it that we will be successful in our efforts.

If we try to repent and become closer to Hashem, He will purify us and draw us close.

The Ramban then explains that in our world today, we are tempted by sin, and the free choice is our's to make. But in the future, Hashem will purify us so that we will naturally want to serve Him without any internal struggle.

Our teshuva is the first step towards realizing this end, and if we initiate the process, Hashem will get us all the way there!

It is very inspiring to realize that when we embark on the path of teshuva, we are actually on the path to the days of Moshiach, and we are heading in the direction of perfection.

We might not make it all the way to the finish line right away, but at least we are heading in the right direction!

Have a wonderful Shabbos!

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