From Strength to Strength
Bu Debbie Shapiro
Opening up our local phone book, one can't help but be amazed at the sheer number of Gemachim that are available – and at the wide range of services that they offer. I've heard of Shabbos gemachs, Chalaka gemachs (that provide everything you need, from cake designs to prayers, to make the day special) table and chair gemachs, linen gemachs, table center gemachs, but it wasn't until a few days before Rosh Hashana, when a friend of mine forwarded me the following email, that I heard of a CHIZUK gemach!
From: Chazak 5772
To: Chazak 5772
Sent: Wednesday, September 28, 2011 12:32 AM
Subject: CHaZaK 5772 - Issue II
We are proud to present the second issue of CHaZaK 5772. For those who participated last week, well done!
With the approach of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, let's remember how we feel during Ne'ilah, as we feel the gates of Shamayim closing and we wish for a few more days of opportunity to prove ourselves, to overcome our yetzer hara and come closer to Hashem. Now is the time! Now, the gates are open! Let’s make the most of each and every moment!
But sometimes it's difficult to push ourselves to actually sit down and decide what it is that we would like to work on. We are all so busy with our day-to-day life that we often don’t make the time that is necessary to actually take on ourselves to make changes. And then it so often happens that even after we have made a firm resolution to make some changes in our lives, we get busy with other things and forget about it.
CHaZaK 5772 (ChiZuk Kabolos) is offering incentives to encourage us all to make these resolutions -- these kabolos -- and to actually keep them! Of course we would never take on a Kabolah just for the prizes; it wouldn't be worthwhile. The prizes are there to give us a push to do what we already want to do.
So here's the program: choose one or two kabolos and write us to tell us what you chose. Don't worry, names will not be publicized or passed on. Next week, write us to let us know if you kept it, and if so, you will enter our raffle. Two Kabolos doubles your chances of winning!
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At the end of the email was a long list of suggested kabalos – from making the minyan on time to learning ten minutes of Mussar a day, to avoiding a questionable hechsher – followed by a list of 14 prizes to choose from, ranging from a magazine subscription, to a tablecloth, to a balloon arrangement.