January 2021

If someone gave you the gift of an unrestricted $1,000, how might you use it?  

Most of us already have myriad ideas, but would carefully ponder our choices before parting with this windfall.  We may never see a gift like this again!

What about the gift of 365 days?  Thoughts? Ideas? Careful pondering?  The gift of time is, truly, an irreplaceable find! 

This month, we begin a new year.  How might we use the gift of the coming days, weeks and months?

When the world was new, G-d surveyed His work at the end of each day of creating and said, “It was good.”  On the sixth day, after creating Adam and Eve, He said, “It was very good.”  Nowhere do we read that things were perfect and, perhaps, this gives us something to do.  Maybe, just maybe, our job is to bring the world the rest of the way.  Tikkun Olam, repair of the world, is a mission assigned to each of us and this may be accomplished in a wide variety of ways.  

Just as we had our work laid out for us at the beginning of time, it likewise remains for us at the start of this new year.  Last month, we spoke about reaching out to G-d; what about the ways via which we might reach out to our fellow human beings?  Today, more than at almost any other point in recent memory, we need each other and the gifts that each of us might bring to the table.

 

In the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve enjoyed unlimited food and drink, leisurely days, great weather (this wasn’t specifically mentioned, but no one was wearing too very much!), beautiful surroundings, an absence of illness, social companionship and, at least for a while, peace.  As we no longer live in the Garden, irrespective of whether it was good or very good, there is still lots of work to be done.  How might we use the next 365 days to bring our world closer to being perfect?  

 

As all of us do not have unlimited food and drink, food banks warmly welcome contributions of non-perishable food items or dollars with which they may purchase food for the expanding client rolls they serve.  Some of us who are experiencing cabin fever might enjoy a friend with whom to take a short, socially distanced walk while the weather still allows for this.  Many remain hospitalized with covid-19 and other ailments.  Sending cards and notes are always meaningful when we cannot visit, children’s hospitals welcome new toys and nurses’ stations so appreciate buckets of cookies that say “thank you!” A periodic phone call to someone to brighten his/her day, a meal left for someone who is just trying to get through each 24 hours and/or an offer to make an errand run for a senior are all meaningful ways to say “I care” and to make the whole world a better place.

 

John Lennon asked us to imagine living for today.  What if we did—365 times this year?  Maybe we wouldn’t have to imagine living in the Garden; we’d have our very own.

 

Wishing you every blessing throughout the new year and beyond~

Kol tuv,

R’Andra

 

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