Minute 817: Attic

Mom came down with a basket full of papers, notebooks and photographs. She smiled and declared, “You’re not going to believe what I found in the attic.”

“Mom, it can’t be that incredible,” Rivkah said. “We’ve all seen the old pictures before.”

“When I was little I never agreed with Rivkah, but right now I do. We’re the ones in the pictures, so what’s the surprise? We lived those moments,” Shaindy said.

“Don’t jump to conclusions so quickly,” their mother warned. “You’ve both got children this age and you’re going to be a little surprised at the way you looked and the things you said.”

The disagreement was settled in their mother’s favor as the young ladies rummaged through their own youth in pictures and words. Comparisons to their own children, forgotten stages of their lives, and the obvious changes the years had wrought took over the conversation.

“I have to concede,” Rivkah finally admitted, “we’ve all grown up since then and we’ve all changed more than we’d like to admit.”

A few moments of contemplation will reveal an indisputable fact: as the years go by, people change. The daily difference is imperceptible, but the difference over years is obvious. It is similar to time-lapse photography. A camera is set in one position and programmed to snap frames at predetermined intervals. The result can reveal the growth of a flower, the changes in a landscape and the aging of an animal.

Old photographs, school notebooks and the like reveal the big changes that a person undergoes in life. Comparing items reveals change. Each day’s activity is one frame in the time-lapse sequence. With proper attention, the sequence will reveal growth, not decline.

One More Second: Another Thought For the Day

“…many people allow their imaginations to run riot during davening, but to Hashem, thoughts and spoken words are the same. As a person’s prayer (in words) is being presented before Hashem’s throne, the deluge of haphazard and confused words in a person’s mind also come spouting forth, mixing with the spoken words, making him sound like a lunatic. Contemplation of this image should be sufficient inspiration to clear one’s thoughts for prayer.” (Shevet MiYehudah, as quoted by Avi Shulman, Living Life to the Fullest, p. 204)