Many people have been asking me lately why they need a rabbi and spiritual guide to serve Hashem. Can't they get close to Hashem on their own?
Even the best special-forces soldier would be an imbecil to try and find his way through an unfamiliar desert of difficult mountainous terrain without a scout who's intimately familiar with the area. And spiritually, this world is tough terrain. A person is taking a dangerous chance by trying to go it on his own.
When I first became a BT (baal-teshuva, newly observant), I tried a dozen different approaches to Torah Judaism, but my soul never felt like it was in the right place. I became an ordained rabbi, but I still didn't have my spiritual guide. After begging Hashem for almost 9 years, I found Rav Shalom Arush. We've been together for 15 years now. I shudder to think where I would be without him.
Don't try to navigate this world on your own. To paraphrase Abraham Lincoln, if a person acts as his own rabbi, then he has a fool for a pupil.
I thank Hashem for bringing me close to Rav Shalom and I thank Rav Shalom for bringing me close to Hashem.