You have to understand this: A religious 14-year-old boy is not like the average 14-year-old boy.

He is pristine, he has no ordinary passions or cravings. He is not looking to turn 15 and tear Eilat apart. Don’t make him crazy with the latest style of jeans, and don’t try to convince him which singer is better: Eyal Golan or Omer Adam. He has no dreams of conquering the world, he just wants to become one with it and with his innocence to remind us all what the essence of life is, and that you don’t have to dream of a shiny Jeep.

With innocence and inexplicable charm, he went out on perhaps the hottest day of the year to encourage us guys to do the mitzvah of putting on tefillin. This was the dream of Shalom Dov Ber Lipsh, a boy whose innocence enveloped him in a magical aura reserved for the righteous.

He was a boy who didn’t give up. He went out every day and asked us to put on tefillin! This innocence just does not exist in our universe. Everything here is covered in plastic dreams. We daydream about fake reality-TV stars while angels walk among us. I remember this boy passing by with his friends and asking me: Tzaddik, did you put on tefillin today? Yes, in most cases, I lied. And I justified it because I, too, was busy chasing my fake dreams.

Tomorrow I will put on tefillin and bless his soul.

Now it is clear to me: The best are taken from us.

G‑d in heaven is putting together a dream team for you, and you will be the star player.

I can’t get your picture out of my head.

Watch over us, kid, and sorry. Sorry we were busy with our lies while you tried to put it all together.

May your memory be a blessing.

Chef Nir Shriki is a caterer is Kiryat Malachi, Israel, where Shalom Dov Ber Lipsh lived.

Instagram post translated from the Hebrew