Zvi Nov/Dec 2003
As it is written in Ecclesiastes 11:1, “Cast thy bread upon the waters; for thou shalt find it after many days.” So it has been with me.
Before I was married, I worked in a joinery doing construction. It was extremely hard labor. In the summer, many students would work there to make money for school.
One summer a student came who was too weak a man for such difficult work. He was working very hard with concrete; and the others were cruel to him, mocking him and ridiculing him day after day.
One day I went to my boss and said, “You see that student there? I want him to work with me.”
My boss replied, “But he is weak and has no strength. He can die doing such hard work.”
“But I want him,” I said.
So he came to work with me. And I respected him and trained him. We got along well, and he was happy to be with me. The other workers saw how well we worked together and stopped shouting and cursing at him. Even my boss saw the difference and asked, “What is happening here?”
I told him, “We are not beasts. We are human beings. God created us in His image, and I am treating him with respect.” After three months the young man returned to the university.
A few years later I got married, and my wife became pregnant. When she was about to deliver our first child, I brought her to the hospital. We were not in a good situation and had little money. We sat there waiting for the doctor to arrive. And who should come but the man who had worked with me as a student!
He quickly attended to my wife and gave her a private room, one of the best rooms in the hospital. He delivered my baby and provided such good care that people asked us why she was receiving such special treatment. This doctor watched her night and day. “Cast thy bread upon the waters.”
Many years have passed, but we never forgot how well this doctor treated us. A few months ago my wife and I were walking in Jerusalem; and I saw an old man with white hair, stooped over and walking slowly. When I looked more closely, I recognized him. It was the doctor who had delivered my firstborn, who had worked with me as a student. Now, forty-two years later, we met again.
He asked about my daughter. I told him she has four children of her own and that I have fourteen grandchildren who are all growing up faithful to our Lord.
“How can you speak about the Lord without covering your head?” he asked.
I hear this question all the time. “Did Abraham come before the Lord with his head or his heart?” I asked.
The man looked at me and asked, “How did you come to believe the way you do? This is very interesting to me. Please tell me.”
“You know,” I began, “I will never forget all that you did for us forty-two years ago.” I read Ecclesiastes 11:1 to him and said, “Now I will do something for you. I will show you how you can be happy and rejoice in your life.”
“But I am not a young student anymore,” he said. “I am an old man. How can you make me happy now, in my old age?”
I showed him what the prophet Nehemiah said: “Neither be ye grieved; for the joy of the LORD is your strength” (8:10).
“This joy can belong to us,” I said. I told him how I had passed through the Holocaust as a 10-year-old boy. For five years I eluded the Nazis. All my family was murdered. I was embittered and alone.
“Then I began to read the Bible and received the Lord as my Savior. And you can see what joy He has given me, even after all I went through. He gave me a new family, and I can rejoice in Him.”
The doctor told me he was so happy to see me after all these years. I gave him my Bible, and he thanked me for it.