In the beginning of December we celebrated the story of Hanukkah. Shay and I were lucky enough to visit the beautiful children of our community and shared with them the story of Hanukkah. One special moment will always stay with me. We asked the children, “what is the power of light?” One beautiful little girl raised her hand and replied: “light helps us see better.” I was taken aback because she was so very right. She was able to put her finger on what we sometimes forget. That is, our personal ability to see the light through the darkness.
Every one of us knows people who have encountered great darkness. It could be the Holocaust survivors Shay and I used to visit while living in Beer Sheva. It could be refugees who fled oppression, family members plagued with illness and others to whom life has dealt cruel blows. Some of them lost everything and had to begin again. Despite many reasons to despair and dwell in darkness, we all have a choice. That is the “Hanukkah light” moment that is the inspiration we all need. Everyone fails in ways large and small and needs the strength to rise anew.
Hanukkah is a winter holiday. It shines light in the darkest time of year. Each night we add another light, increasing until the entire Hanukkah menorah is illuminated. The lights have been kindled in millions of Jewish homes over thousands of years. At times, it wasn’t easy, but the Jewish people kept shining light into the darkest of times. I bless us all to remember that light is there to help us see better. We have the power to choose between right or wrong. We can use our light to help others out of darkness. Shay and I bless you all with a year full of light, health and happiness. Happy Hanukkah