Years ago I found an article in the Chicago Jewish News that laid out eight gifts for Chanukah, none of which cost a thing. I don’t know the author; I wish I did. But for at least a decade, our children have heard one of these every night, in no particular order. Sometimes it was the only gift they got, but even if there was something to unwrap, they got these gifts first. I have begun re-writing them somewhat, after all these years, with adult children and a changing community and world.
Tonight is also Shabbat. It is a night of double lights, and we can never have too much light in the world.May this be a Shabbat of joy, illumination, warmth in the darkness…..and latkes!
Tonight, the gift of FREEDOM
Freedom came within boundaries that stretched as you got older, and it seemed to have come in painfully measured doses. We always intended you to know and experience freedom within guidelines you can keep using as you’ve matured. You have become an adult and out in the world of nearly unlimited independence, so we hope you will know how to use this freedom, and how to be true to your own standards. Freedom didn’t mean just doing what you wanted. We also hope you realize we gave you this gift so you would be able to recognize lack of freedom in others, and work so that they too will be free.
Chag orim sameach; Happy Chanukah!