Two Fantastic New Story Collections!

Everyone loves stories.

They engage our attention. They inspire and educate, show us truths that we may overlook in the rush and scramble of today’s life, and — let’s admit it — they’re so much fun to read!

Here is a look at two new not-to-be-missed story collections.

Rabbi Yechiel Spero has been engaging and inspiring us with his stories for almost twenty years. In There’s More to the Story: A Treasure Trove of Precious Stories, we will meet the man who ran the world’s most grueling marathon — in his bedroom, where he was trapped by Covid-19. An elderly woman who’d rejected her teacher, Sarah Schenirer, and who finds her way back to Yiddishkeit almost seven decades later, with the help of a young Bais Yaakov student. We’ll read about a Holocaust survivor who told the judge he’d earned his doctorate — in the university of life, and a mix-up that sent a gorgeous three-layered cake to a young boy’s classroom siyum and ensured he would stay Torah-observant many years later. The stories in this collection are, indeed, a treasure trove, gems sparkling with emunah, ahavas Yisrael, and the power of prayer and hashgachah pratis.  

In Living Chessed, Rabbi Avrohom Asher Makovsky shares with us many Torah sources that discuss chessed, inspirational insights and guidance. Above all, he brings the concepts of chessed to life through stories of how chessed can transform the lives of both the giver and receiver. We will read about how the Tzemach Tzedek “opened” the gates of heaven — by racing home to help another Jew in business. How a man fulfilled his dream of having children — by opening a free-loan gemach. We will enjoy — and learn from! — story after story of people who took the opportunity to help someone, often with something as simple as a hug, a compliment, or even just a smile.

As we enter the pre-Pesach and Pesach season, with all its excitement, energy and, yes, stress, there is nothing like a really good story to keep us invigorated, to calm us when we’re feeling overwhelmed, and to assure us that we can reach higher, dig deeper, and be the best people we can be.

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