Several weeks ago, on Lag B'Omer, I joined our community for a rustic excursion to a vast outdoor park. As part of the program, there was a circus show, performed by a husband and wife team. They performed incredible feats of balance, control and co-ordination. At one point, my heart was racing so quickly, as I watched them masterfully balance on the unsteady surfaces while performing heart-stopping tricks.

The highlight of the show, however, was when the couple's young son joined in their unnerving feats. He balanced himself upside down on his father's shoulders—who himself was balanced on a high and unsteady surface—while the youngster performed all kinds of acrobatic, daredevil jumps in the sky landing upside down, his outstretched fingers locking with his father's.

As much as the anticipation grows for each of these daredevil feats, was it possible that in this performance an even greater tension could be sensed?

I don't think it was only my imagination, but the show took on an even greater intensity in these moments because we were aware that the young child balancing on the strong adult's shoulders was not "just" a child, but his son.

As his mother pressed the hoops into his arms for his challenging jumping routine, was she also conveying a kindly extra nod of encouragement, more than she would for any other fellow performer? And as his father stood by his side to take the final bow, was the pride evident in his eyes more for his son's amazing antics than for his own?

True, every performer's heart constricts until he sees his fellow performer successfully land after mastering a thorny trick. Each works hard to contribute his part so that the performance as a whole can succeed. No doubt, a close knit bond of kinship develops among each member of these performing groups.

But here that bond was palpably more evident. After all, this was his son. Her son. He was not just any performer, not just any child, but theirs.

As I watched the show, I thought of this underlying emotional tension.

I thought of how when we see friends or acquaintances going through an issue, a challenge or a temptation in their life, how we empathize for them and try to help in any way possible.

But watching this parent-child trio, I thought that if somehow we can view our friends or acquaintances as part of our family, would our perspective be different? If we could somehow convey true compassion, acceptance, love and self-interest in their success—would that intensity somehow make a tangible difference in their positive outcome?