Listening to the radio recently, I heard a pre-recorded interview with Rabbi David Hartman, an American-born-Israeli living and working in Jerusalem. Rabbi Hartman is the author of several books; he died February 10, 2013. The Rabbi was concerned that people are not spending time seeking God. He said that discussing what we have learned and heard from books and noteworthy teachers is a good way to continue our journey of seeking God. He said the process of SEEKING GOD is a life-long journey.
Rabbi Hartman referred to this old Hasidic story: Rabbi Barukh’s grandson Yehiel was once playing hide-and-seek with other children. He hid himself well and waited for one of his friends to find him. When after a long time this did not happen, he emerged from his hiding place and to his great disappointment he discovered that the boys had given up looking for him and gone home. In tears he came home to his grandfather and told him what had transpired. Rabbi Hartman ended this old Hasidic story by saying, “Now you know how God feels when we stop seeking Him.”
He referred to Psalm 70:4 – But let all who seek you rejoice and be glad in you. In SEEKING God you will find JOY.
Dear Lord, help me to realize that seeking you is an action that continues throughout my life – the process of seeking You is where I will find joy. Help me to open my eyes. I know you really aren’t hiding from me, it’s just that sometimes I stop looking.
This version of the Hasidic Hide-and-Seek story was found in Jewish Mysticism, An Introduction, by J. H. Laenen.