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With Abundance

Lag Baomer, Jerusalem, 1990. Rabbi Eliyahu Levin was in attendance at a large rally for children in honor of the holiday when he heard this announcement: “And the winner of a round-trip ticket to America to see the Lubavitcher Rebbe – Shraga Feivel Levin!”

“Could that be our Shraga?” Rabbi Levin wondered to himself.

The announcement continued, “This prize includes three round-trip tickets – for the child and both his parents!”

Indeed, Rabbi Levin had heard correctly. His son had won the grand prize, a trip to see the Rebbe, and both his parents would be going along as well.

The Levin family did not identify themselves as Chabad chassidim. Rabbi Eliyahu, though, had been exposed to the Chabad approach since childhood. As a young yeshivah student, he used to attend a nightly study session in Chassidut in a neighborhood synagogue. Over the years, his respect and admiration for Chabad grew, and in particular for the Rebbe.

Rabbi Levin's close friend, Rabbi Eliezer Lichtenstein, took upon himself to arrange all the details of the trip. He even arranged for someone to pick up the Levins from the airport and drive them to the home of their host, Rabbi Chaim Boruch Halberstam.

The spiritual experiences they had during their time in New York left a deep imprint on Shraga and his parents. Rabbi Eliyahu remembers how electrifying it was to hear the Rebbe deliver a deep Torah discourse and conclude as usual with his wishes for a complete and immediate Redemption, and to hear the resounding amen from the crowd.

The Levin family naturally went to see the Rebbe when he received visitors on the “dollar line,” distributing dollars for charity along with blessings. The Rebbe's secretary, Rabbi Leibel Groner, introduced them as visitors from Israel who had won a raffle to come. Rabbi Eliyahu Levin informed the Rebbe that he was the grandson of Rabbi Aryeh Levin, the famed tzadik of Jerusalem. With a beaming smile the Rebbe responded, “Rabbi Aryeh Levin, zecher tzadik l'vrachah,” may the tzadik’s memory be for a blessing. The Rebbe then blessed him to continue in the ways of his grandfather for generations to come, and his merit would protect them if they would do so.

The Levin family went once more for dollars during their visit, and Mrs. Levin took the opportunity to ask for a blessing for the other family members who had not come with them. She asked that G-d should help her marry off her children easily and they should all go in the ways of the Torah. The Rebbe blessed her and added, “with abundance.”

**

When the Levins returned to Israel they saw the immediate fulfillment of the Rebbe's blessing. They had been attempting for many long months to sell their apartment, in Jerusalem's Shaarei Chesed neighborhood, in order to buy a larger home to meet their growing family's needs. On the first day they returned, they were approached by a buyer.

Mrs. Levin was shopping in the local grocery store when a woman with a British accent approached her. “For a long time I've been looking to buy an apartment in this neighborhood. Do you know of anyone who's interested in selling?”

Mrs. Levin found it hard to hide her surprise. “I am interested in selling,” she replied.

That very day they both went to a lawyer and drew up a contract. The buyer did not ask to tour the house; it was enough for her to see it from the outside. She explained that she very much wanted to own a piece of property in the Holy Land, and she loved the Shaarei Chesed neighborhood where the Levins lived. She even offered a higher price than the Levins were asking.

That same day she gave the full sum to the Levins, in cash. If that were not enough, she gave them permission to live in the home rent-free for two years, until their new apartment would be ready to move in.

Thus the Rebbe's blessing for “abundance” was fulfilled, promptly. The money they received from the sale of their apartment allowed them to move into a comfortable, spacious home in a different neighborhood.

“Thank G-d,” said Rabbi Levin, with his eyes shining. “We merited to marry off all our children, with abundance. When we were on the flight back from New York, my wife said, with full faith in the Rebbe's blessing, ‘Don't worry, you will see that everything will work out. I don't know how, exactly, but I trust the Rebbe's blessing.’”

And, indeed, the blessing was fulfilled.
   
 

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