Honorable Mensch-ion

Small Flame, Big Light

The Chofetz Chaim suggested that even the most feeble of flames is powerful enough to dispel the thickest darkness in the largest of rooms. We often ask, “What difference will my flame make?” If I keep kosher, observe Shabbat, or give tzedakah, will it matter?”

Rabbi Bernard Poupko teaches that the heroic Maccabees never in their wildest dreams foresaw that their revolt would restore Jewish sovereignty for well over two centuries. The statistics were against them, but they fought and prevailed. They knew their actions would affect the generations to come; ancestors whom they would never encounter.

As you light the Chanukiah this week, think about an individual whose small kindled flame led to a bright light in your life. Then ask yourself, “How will I ignite another flame that will burn brightly in the lives of others for years to come?”

Mishlei, the Book of Proverbs, writes, Ner Adonai nishmat ha-adam, the candle of God is the soul of the human. May each of us be that candle of God on this festival of lights.

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