Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Proper Rebuke

Once, a certain Maggid came to Radin and heard the Chofetz Chayim zt”l speak on the greatness of tochachah. The Gadol concluded, “If you have been blessed with an ability to speak effectively in public, you must use it to help people change.”

The visiting Maggid approached the Chofetz Chayim and said, “Rebbi, while I was in another town recently, I saw that the community was lax about many halachos. During Shabbos, I stood before the people and tried to wake them up with a fiery derashah. But I had to step down in the middle after a fight broke out and the congregation threatened to remove me by force!”

“What was your delivery like?” asked the Chofetz Chayim.

The Maggid was taken aback. “What does my delivery have to do with it? I saw the situation in the town and couldn’t remain silent. Naturally, I shouted my rebuke as loud as I could!”

The Gadol chided the man, “Did you shout when you put on your tefillin this morning? What makes you think you should shout when fulfilling another mitzvah called tochachah?”

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