It's not often that we get the chance to step outside of our own communities and experience the way others live.
Recently, I had the opportunity to spend some time with leaders from the Orthodox Jewish community in Brooklyn, New York, and the experience was truly enlightening.
Here are seven things I learned from my time with these inspiring individuals:
Rest requires discipline.
I was so inspired by the Orthodox Jewish community's relentless commitment to honoring and practicing "SHABBAT", which is their day of rest.
They take it so seriously, and exercise extreme intentionality in their work and family rhythms all week to ensure that Friday eve to Saturday eve is truly rest.
Generosity can be cultural.
10% of their business profits go to causes, charities, and ministry.
It's not even a question - it's just assumed and part of the culture.
Connection is crucial.
My long-time friend Naftali Tessler taught me that connection is at the core of his mission.
Walking around Brooklyn with him is like walking with the mayor - he's always saying hello, making introductions, and even yelling out his car window at people he knows.
I saw firsthand how much people are blessed by the way he proactively pursues connection.
I've been blessed by it.
My faith is different than theirs. They know I'm a Christian.
But they never used that as a reason to avoid me or my company.
In fact, many of them are some of our most involved customers.
We had some of the most fruitful, rewarding, and enlightening conversations about our faith and worldview, and that's only possible because of their willingness to embrace differences.
Humility is a prerequisite for growth.
My friend Simcha Beller inspired me with his powerful posture of hungry humility.
He always wants to get better, assumes he can know more, requests feedback and is constantly looking for opportunities to improve as a person and leader.
It's an inspiration, and it's the reason why he's always growing.
Community is king.
They spend so much time with each other, and it's beautiful.
I'd bet that the loneliness epidemic that is ravaging America isn't as prevalent in their few blocks of Brooklyn.
I don't think it's a coincidence that they don't participate in most of the social media apps because they are always having meals, serving each other, and celebrating together.
Ritual is essential.
New York is kind of crazy.
But in the midst of the insanity, they follow a routine of ritual.
I learned that ritual is essential to their way of life.
It's something that they practice and hold in high regard, and it's clear that it brings a sense of grounding and order to their lives.
It was an incredible experience to learn from and spend time with these leaders from the Orthodox Jewish community.
Their commitment to faith, family, and community is truly inspiring, and it was a humbling reminder to me of the importance of these values in my own life.