Yeshiva Ahron Yaakov/Ohr Eliyahu recently had the honor to have the Rosh HaYeshiva of Yeshiva Chofetz Chaim, HaRav Akiva Grunblatt, visit the Yeshiva.
Rav Grunblatt spoke to with the middle school talmidim and delivered a shmuess to the boys.
Rav Grunblatt elaborated on the idea that each and every step in the right direction towards avodas Hashem and teshuva is of the utmost importance and greatness.
Rav Grunblatt quoted a midrash rabbah in Parshas Balak that says, that after the donkey spoke to Billam and was made aware that a malach was standing in the path blocking the way, Billam said the words “I have sinned”. The Midrash says that those words had great significance. Billam was an evil person, but was also very smart and cunning. Billam knew that one who does teshuva, a malach cannot inflict harm upon him. He therefore said “I have sinned”.
The Rosh hayeshiva pointed out that if we take Billam’s words into context, his ‘Teshuva’ should not really have been a real teshuva at all. Billam was still intent on cursing the Jews, just as he was intent on cursing them before it was revealed to him that the malacha was there. Apparently, we see a great lesson from this Midrash. A step, even a tiny and possibly insincere step, has great impact upon a person and can have great outcomes.
Rav Grunblatt ended by giving a bracha to all the boys, rabbeim and yeshiva.
After Rav Grunblatt finished, the middle school talmidim then went to say shalom aleichem to the Rosh HaYeshiva.