During my weekly library browsing day last week, I found a book called Living a Life that Matters by Rabbi Harold S. Kushner. I had been looking for another book to read that would give insight into living life for and with God. However, there have been few authors recently that write on this subject that I have been able to get into. This was a quick read, insightful, and I had a hard time putting it down.
In a world where we can feel ignored or lost in the crowd, overwhelmed by all the pressures of conformity, we might question whether or not our lives are important. Kushner writes to let us know that our lives are important; the lives in which we let our whole selves shine forth. He acknowledges the conflict which separates our whole self from our divided self while drawing upon Biblical examples. We can relate to Jacob in wrestling with right and wrong behavior and learn that we too can change, though it will be a struggle.
A sentence that stands out to me near the end of his book is that “Goodness and love are two of the experiences that assure us that our lives have mattered to the world, that we have not lived in vain.” Throughout his book Kushner has shown through modern and Biblical examples the difference in living with these attributes of goodness and love and living through deceitful means. We are shown how to see things from another perspective, one that the world doesn’t show us.
I enjoyed the message of this book and only hope that I can live my life letting these principles of goodness and love stand out above everything else.