Portion Yitro Who's that Calling?

Portion Yitro Who's that Calling?
In our portion
Yitro - Jethro the idol worshipper comes to the Israelites and Moses
Ostensibly  he JOINS the people and 
is now close to the Almighty and 
even advises Moses - Who ... remember ... is the Chief Judge 
and guide to and Transmitter of the L-ord' s will on earth.
Uh - he does what?
Why would the idolater
theHigh Priest of Midian 
come to share with the High Judge of the Almighty?
 And be ACCEPTED and BLESSED? And have a Portion named for him?
The Talmud Daf Yomi in Avoda Zara is replete with stories this week
touching on rules of herecy punishment - and salvation ...
And Rebbe Eliezer gets in TROUBLE
The Talmud says he met a heretic who had a GOOD interpretation of a Torah Passage - 
And we know that we are allowed to study what the gentiles may be able to teach us for the purpose of understanding how
But Rebbe Eliezer was punished for ENJOYING what he learned from the heretic-
Which is something not wise - because we might LOSE FOCUS
Jethro - in leaving home to JOIN US in the desert - never lost FOCUS and-
obviously on a deep level - he came NOT to instruct Moses our teacher-
In a quote sent today from the Yeshiva Simchat Shlomo of my late friend Sholom Brodt zatza"l - with the words of Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach zatza"l:
"The Ba'al Shem Tov is teaching that G-d is really calling us all the time,
 the only thing is that we don't believe that G-d is calling us.
The truth is that every holy thought that comes to my head is mamesh G-d calling me, it's mamesh G-d's voice.
 Imagine, suddenly I think I really should be better, it's really mamesh G-d calling me, but I think I had a good thought.
 If I would know it's G-d calling me I would jump out of my skin, so why don't we jump out of our skin?
 Very simple, because we never call G-d by his name, so we don't believe that he calls us by our name,
 but if you are on the real oneness calling G-d name, calling G-d on his level then you understand that G-d is calling you back. This is very deep stuff."
So Jethro - Yitro - "got it" - and
Moses (Moshe Rabaynu) got it years before at the burning bush
And if we drink in the wisdom of the Ten Commandments in this week's portion -
we can ALL be closer to that CALL FROM the ALMIGHTY

Shabbat Shalom
Rabbi Andy Eichenholz