The Emissary from the World to Come
TOLD BY ESTHER WEINSTEIN TO YEHUDIT GUT-BURG
Once there was a Jew named Moshke. Desperately poor, he had many children and no way to make a living. One night, sleep deserted him; his wife, too, could not sleep. Winter was approaching, and they had no firewood and no warm clothes, neither for the children nor for themselves. He did not know where his salvation would come from. He thought and thought until at last he fell asleep.
In the morning, he hired a wagon and driver and traveled to the town of Chelm. When he reached its main street he began proclaiming that he had just arrived from the World of Truth, bringing greetings to all the inhabitants of Chelm.
All their relatives (he reported) had asked for winter clothes, because winter was approaching and they had nothing to wear. The townspeople brought him bundles of clothing and parcels of food. There's no firewood either (he hinted). So they also brought him firewood. He piled up the clothes and food and other donations and returned home, where he started unloading the bundles. It was already dark outside but he filled his house with all the gifts—and his family was in heaven.