Once upon a time, there was a poor man named Yosef. Yosef was known as Yosef Mokir Shabbat, which means "Yosef who treasures Shabbat," because whatever he had and whatever he earned, however little, he would spend on something special for Shabbat.

He lived near a rich man who was not Jewish. One day, the rich man was told by some astrologers—people who look at the stars and say what they think will happen in the future—that everything he had would go to Yosef Mokir Shabbat. The rich man believed them and sold all his property. With the money he received, he bought a pearl which he placed in a beautiful hat.

“Hah,” he said to himself. “I will keep this hat on my head all the time, and there is no way my great wealth will ever go to that poor neighbor of mine, Yosef.”

It happened once that the rich man was crossing a river in a ferry, and a great wind came and blew his hat right into the water. A giant fish came by and swallowed it. Some fishermen caught the gigantic fish and brought it to shore just before Shabbat was about to start. The fishermen asked: “Who would buy such a big fish so late in the day?” “Go bring it to Yosef,” the townspeople said to the fishermen. “He always buys the best food and drink to honor Shabbat.” They brought it to him and he purchased it.

Eager to cook the fish for Shabbat, Yosef slit it open and found the giant pearl inside. That Shabbat, there was much singing and joy in Yosef’s home as they all saw how G‑d rewarded them for keeping Shabbat.

An old man came to Yosef and told him: “One who lends to Shabbat, Shabbat repays him.”

Adapted from Shabbat 119a