Love

“God, grant that I might not so much seek to be loved as to love.”  - St. Francis of Assisi 

We live in a world so filled with pain and suffering that we sometimes forget how important it is to give love to others rather than seek it all the time. I know that I am loved every day God blesses me with the first breath of a new day. Once that happens and I am able to arise with the same capacity as yesterday I know how much I am loved.

I then march to the mirror and affirm God’s love for me by affirming my love for me. I then ask God to guide me in my day with actions on God’s behalf that show and give love to others. I have learned repeatedly just how much love I have to give by seeking opportunities to love others in ways I never knew I could. By giving love to others I get love in all the right places.

As a Rabbi and Spiritual Counselor, the message of HOPE is probably the most important message I can carry to the person who is in despair and feeling hopeless. In my counseling sessions, clients frequently become frustrated with me as I respect their right to be hopeless and my right to be hopeful for them until they can for themselves. 

That first breath in the morning tells me how loved I am!

My prayer for you is that you will awaken, inhale and know that you are loved and spend your day spreading the love you have been given.

I am a modern and independent Rabbi with an MSW Degree and 24+ years of sobriety providing addiction counseling focusing on healing, spiritual guidance and personalized life cycle events. If you, a family member or friend are in need of my services, please contact me at 954-755-3764 to get the help you deserve.

Hugs and Blessings,
Rabbi Mitch

On Behalf of Others

“You must give some time to your fellow men. Even if it’s a little thing, do something for others – something for which you get no pay but the privilege of doing it.” -  Albert Schweitzer

Albert Schweitzer was an Alsatian German-French theologian, musician, philosopher, and physician. He received the 1952 Nobel Peace Prize in 1953 for his philosophy of “Reverence for Life“, expressed in many ways, but most famously in founding and sustaining the Albert Schweitzer Hospital in Gabon, west central Africa.

Schweitzer’s passionate quest was to discover a universal ethical philosophy, anchored in a universal reality, and make it directly available to all of humanity.

I often write about the importance of service to our community, fellow beings, those in need, those less fortunate and more. I am making this a brief message as I know that you do not need me telling you how to be kind. I have learned much of what I know about kindness by watching and learning from you.

The question I have for us all today is, “What have I done, am I doing or will I do to help someone and fulfill the privilege of making my and someone else’s life better today?”

My prayer for you today is that you will redouble your efforts on behalf of those who are in despair.

Hugs and Blessings,
Rabbi Mitch

Burnout

In dealing with those who are undergoing great suffering, if you feel “burnout” settling in, if you feel demoralized and exhausted, it is best, for the sake of everyone, to withdraw and restore yourself. The point is to have a long-term prospective. – Dalai Lama

Have you reached a point where the things that you once looked forward to have become a chore and no longer excite you? Are activities that at one time recharged you battery now failing you at your time of need? Are you more easily exhausted, frustrated and annoyed with yourself and others? Is your patience wearing thin?

If any of the above describes how you are feeling more than you used to, I know how you feel. It is one that I lived in for many years and still meet up with once in a while. This is a type of burnout that affects our work, relationships, sleep, eating, sex lives and attitudes. As a Rabbi and Addictions/Spiritual Counselor, I experience burnout with frequency. I no longer worry about it as today I have tools to restore myself in the face of exhaustion.

 

There is a way out and I offer some suggestions to help you and me cope with these times whenever they occur.

1.       Regroup your social life and get together for brunch, coffee, bowling,    phone chats, walks or whatever activity you like with people you have stopped seeing. Reconnect you to you and see the need for downtime in your life.

2.      As we meet up with burnout, we literally stop “burning off” and start pounding on. We give up exercise for cookies and cream, the sofa and remote control. Get your butt up and burnout taking care of your body, not ignoring it. There is something you can do! That is the key, do something!

3.      Find a way to share your time giving to others. Find an organization, cause or issue that drives your passion and join others in making your slice of life a better place for you and those you help.

4.      Create a manuscript of what you truly want from your life. We all lose track of time and even worse, what gives us joy. Refocus and renew the vision you once had for a happy and fulfilling life. It is within your reach one eye opening moment at a time.

5.      Let some one who loves you know you are suffering and could use their help. I know how prideful we can be when it comes to letting others know we are not okay, but they already know. They just don’t know how to help. They want to. Ask for help. You deserve to feel better.

6.      Find reasons to laugh as laughter reduces tension faster than just about anything. It would be ideal if you could be the source of the laughter so you could renew your self image as a fun loving and joyful person.

7.      Whose fault is it today? When we reach the burnout state of mind, we have reached the stage of blaming everyone in sight. Stop that right now and hold yourself accountable for where you are. You will feel worse for the moment and better within minutes as you are now back in control.

This is your life, your burnout and your choice to feel better. There are many other strategies to cope with and rise from burnout. Try these and add your own that help you along the way, but do something. You are way too valuable to sit this one out and let your life go by.

My prayer for you today is that you see the need for you to be vigilant every day to take better care of yourself and avoid the pain of burnout.

Hugs and Blessings,
Rabbi Mitch

Rebirth

“The world is new to us every morning – this is God’s gift; and every person should believe they are reborn each day.” – Baal Shem Tov

Rabbi Yisroel (Israel) ben Eliezer (August 27, 1698 – May 22, 1760), often called Baal Shem Tov or Besht, was a Jewish mystical rabbi. He is considered to be the founder of Hasidic Judaism.

How powerful a notion that we are each reborn daily; I know that upon awakening daily, my first act is one of gratitude in my heart and soul for my first breath and all that will enter my path today. I have been blessed with the gift of life and the ability to help others.

My path to becoming a Rabbi and Spiritual Counselor was predicated upon me learning the notion of selflessness and random acts of kindness to others. My work with clients and congregants is around taking action to help others and know how much we help ourselves in the process.

I know that at some point in my day I will be presented with an opportunity to meet someone new, help someone in need or perform a random act of kindness for someone. Wow! I stand in awe of a God that blessed me with life on a daily basis and has given me what God has chosen to throw my way.

It is not always what I “wanted”, but it is always what it is and I can either accept it with joy or whine the day away. When my heart is open I rejoice; when my heart is filled with resentment, I whine the day away. What a waste it is for me to whine.

My prayer for you today is that you acknowledge your rebirth with joy and gratitude and give back to your God

all the blessings you can give through your love of yourself and your kindness to others.

I am a modern and independent Rabbi with an MSW Degree and 24+ years of sobriety providing addiction counseling focusing on healing, spiritual guidance and personalized life cycle events. If you, a family member or friend are in need of my services, please contact me at 954-755-3764 to get the help you deserve.
Hugs and Blessings,
Rabbi Mitch

Wisdom

“A man begins cutting his wisdom teeth the first time he bites off more than he can chew. “  – Herb Caen

Herbert Eugene Caen was a Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist working in San Francisco. Caen worked for the San Francisco Chronicle from the late 1930s until his death in 1997. Caen gained fame with his column “It’s News to Me,” which was first published July 5, 1938. His columns were known for their dry wit and their author’s intimate knowledge of the happenings in his city. Caen had a considerable influence on pop culture and its language; most notably, he coined the term “beatnik” in his April 2, 1958 column and popularized the word “hippie” during San Francisco’s 1967 Summer of Love.

How often have we looked at something and said, “I can do that” or something like that? Often I am sure. The younger we are the more likely we did that with greater regularity as there was nothing we did not believe we could do. Can you remember the first time you went head first into a new experience and crashed rather quickly? This was something novel as I had never had that happen before. What did I do? I got up and went head first into the experience over and over believing I would succeed. I didn’t. I went to my parents and asked them what I needed to do to be successful and they foolishly suggested that maybe I needed to accept that this particular experience was not meant to be. How old and ridiculous could they be? What did they know?

As a Rabbi and Spiritual Counselor in Recovery, I have learned that despite my best intentions, motives and desire, the answer is still “NO.” Helping congregants and clients learn that is time consuming and I reassure them that I fully respect their need to find their own path in their journey to the “wisdom to know the difference.”

Well, as I have come to learn, my wisdom teeth are not only in my mouth, but in my acceptance as well. As I have grown I have come to know that some things are not meant to be. The sooner I accept that the greater my wisdom becomes. For me, my wisdom has grown as my faith and trust in a God have grown as I believe today that whatever happens is meant to be and when I give my “best” effort and the outcome is other than what I had hoped for, I smile internally and move on. That is my wisdom speaking to me.

My prayer for you today is that you find your wisdom in your acceptance and faith and feel the joy of growing in new ways.

I am a modern and independent Rabbi with an MSW Degree and 24+ years of sobriety providing addiction counseling focusing on healing, spiritual guidance and personalized life cycle events. If you, a family member or friend are in need of my services, please contact me at 954-755-3764 to get the help you deserve.

Hugs and Blessings,
Rabbi Mitch