Heart to Heart | IFCJ
Skip Navigation
Jerusalem

Heart to Heart

default image for holy land moments posts

As in water face answereth to face, so the heart of man to man. Proverbs 27:19 KJV

There was once a Jewish sage who was asked how he became the greatest leader of his generation. The questioner most likely expected an answer that would include the sage's most outstanding traits and abilities that proved he was superior to anyone else. However, the wise man answered surprisingly, "I never met a person who wasn't somehow better than me."

In the Talmud, the question is asked, "Who is wise?" The answer: "He who learns from every person." The sage who had become a great leader of his generation didn't do so by honoring his own wisdom, but by honoring and learning from the wisdom of others.

Humility is the key to knowledge - and it is also the key to sharing knowledge.

The rabbis provide an analogy. When a person stands next to a body of water, it reflects his image enlarged. When he moves away from the water, his image shrinks. When a person comes cheek-to-cheek with the water, both the person and his image are identical.

The same is true between people. If one person enlarges himself and speaks from a place of arrogance, the other person will sense this and do the same. If, however, he humbles himself, the friend will do the same. When they are both as humble as possible, they become equal. As it says in Proverbs: "As in water face answereth to face, so the heart of man to man." As water reflects people, our hearts are reflected in the hearts of others.

When a person is humble, he or she encourages others to be authentic and humble as well. This allows for the transmission of ideas from one person to the next so that each can learn from the other without pride getting in the way.

According to Jewish tradition, in the afterlife a person is asked, "Did you set your friend above you?" In other words, were we humble enough to learn from others? Did we value wisdom more than prestige and position? Did we value every human being?

These are the questions that we should each ask ourselves today if we want to become wiser in the future. We can spend our lives focused only on ourselves, and we might be able to improve upon ourselves a little. However, when we open ourselves up to the Divine wisdom and knowledge that God has placed in every person, we can grow exponentially in our own wisdom and knowledge.

Next time you speak with anyone, humble your heart and speak from the heart. As we say in Judaism, "Words that come from the heart go straight to the heart."

LATEST DEVOTIONAL

Fill Up On Love

February 21, 2019

Fill yourself with God’s love, and there’ll be no space for anything else.

Read More

NEW TEACHING RESOURCE

Study of Ruth

A Study on Ruth

The Book of Ruth is traditionally read during Shavuot, both for its ties to the harvest season and for Ruth's vow to follow the God of Israel. Learn more about her legacy of faith and loyalty with this free Bible study, The Life of Ruth.

Download Now

HOW TO HELP

Photo of Rabbi Eckstein by plane with new olim on Wings of Eagles Aliyah - The Fellowship has scheduled an emergency Memorial Freedom Flight departing to bring 240 Ukrainian Jews, who are being targeted with anti-Semitic hatred and violence, home to Israel.

Memorial Freedom Flight

You can honor Rabbi Eckstein's life and ministry through your memorial On Wings of Eagles gift in his name. The first Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein Memorial Freedom Flight departs on February 24th lifting off from Ukraine, to bring Jews who are being targeted with anti-Semitic hatred and violence, home to Israel. Your impact will further Rabbi Eckstein's mission and the prophetic rescue of God's people from the "four corners of the earth" (Isaiah 11:12 KJV).

Donate Now