My computer finally recovered from a virus. It was pretty frightening to say the least. I clicked on a link in an email from a sender I thought I could trust and next thing I knew something showed up on my screen that started running a virus scan on my computer...shortly after that my computer was completely taken over by this virus and the only option I had to click on was to purchase some sort of software that would clean up my computer-all I had to do was provide them with my credit card information. I knew better than to do that.
It took a lot of time to clean up this mess but by now my computer is just about back to normal. Some of the settings have to be plays around with to get it back to the way I like it but b"h I have all my files back and nothing was lost.
I cannot describe how scary it is to watch the icons on my desktop slowly disappear and then to click on Start>Programs and to see nothing there. Nothing at all. What happened to all the files i have saved there? And the pictures?!
"Don't worry." the guy who was helping us fix it said reassuringly. "They just do this to scare you. I will be able to get all your files back for you."
I was not really convinced and every time I asked him he calmed me down and told me there was no reason to worry; he would be able to retrieve all my information, every file and every picture for me.
It took a long time but eventually the men at Avenue M Computers got rid of the virus. It had penetrated deep inside the computer. It took a lot of work but they were able to get to the core of the problem and clean up the mess, getting the computer back to it's original state.
This gave me a lot to think about. I thought about Our People and how many of us are infected with a virus. So many teenagers are so far away from their parents' ways. So, so many people don't even know about the Torah and what they are missing-the virus has gotten to them, so deep inside their core.
It will take a lot of work, so much time and even more patience to get that virus out of them...to clean them up, to show them the way. With love and care they can be reached. We just need to use the right tools to get to their hearts.
Many people think that kiruv should be left to the professionals-the ones who are trained to answer the toughest questions and the ones who have all the proofs at their fingertips. But really, this is not true. You never know how far a warm smile, a friendly hello or opening the door to a stranger at the supermarket can go. Show people that Jews are warm and caring-it makes such a difference.
It's not that hard to make a kiddush Hashem with simple things. When you are out shopping or walking down the street, people are looking at you. You don't know how closely that woman in jeans is watching you. I was in a bakery on Friday and I saw an older couple purchasing challah for shabbos-I never would have guessed that they were Jewish from the way they looked. Were they watching me? Possibly. I'll never know. But if I act properly wherever I go, I can know that I am making a kiddush Hashem and whoever sees me will think positively of Our People.
Yes, our nation is infected. There are so many Jews who are so far away from the truth. You don't have to do huge things to make an impact. Sometimes, it's those small interactions with those who are far away that can help bring them back.
And if you feel you have the ability to really make a difference, take the time to sign up for Partners in Torah or Oorah's Torah Mates program.
May the day come when we are completely cleaned from the virus that has infected Our People for so many generations!