(Courtesy: Rabbi Yosef Benarroch)

It is told that before Rosh Hashanah the great Hasidic master Rabbi Levi Yitzhak of Berditchev was searching for the appropriate person to blow the Shofar. He wanted a sincere G-d fearing individual. Many candidates came forward. To each one he would ask the same question, “what will you be thinking about as you sound the Shofar”.

Each one responded that they would be thinking the deepest Kabalistic thoughts. For some reason Rabbi Levi Yitzhak was not satisfied. Finally a very simple Jew came to him. When asked what he would be thinking he answered, “I have to be honest, I have two daughters and I am barely able to provide for them. I want nothing more than to see them married and happy. When I blow the Shofar I will be thinking of my daughters”. When the Rabbi heard these simple yet heartfelt words he proclaimed, “It is you that will blow the Shofar for us”.

I think the message is quite clear. There can be no change for the better without heartfelt confession. When our words come from the bottom of our heart in complete sincerity then we can begin the process of change. Then and only then can we stand before G-d and each other and be forgiven.