Miracles. Do they still happen? Isn’t everything a miracle?
It’s a miracle we’re still around. It’s a miracle we can hop on a plane and visit Eretz Yisrael. It’s a miracle I can pretty much write anything about Judaism without fearing arrest!
Yet there are miracles, and then there are miracles. When a small band of inexperienced fighters chase out the mighty legions of the Greek army. When 100 Israeli commandos fly 3000 miles and successfully rescue 102 hostages. When a flask of oil with enough to burn one night burns eight. These are miracles which grab our attention leaving us humbled at the hand of heaven.
In a modern world of spreadsheets and algorithms giving us predictions of exactly what will be, we can easily lose sight of the hand behind it all.
Miracles such as the ones in the story of Chanukah remind us that there is a Creator who created heaven and earth, computers and the internet. Every once in a while, the need arises for Him to show his hand and protect the good and the holy.
When looking into classic Jewish sources which describe the process of the future redemption, it seems there will be a combination of the two types of miracles. On the one hand, there will be miracles so great they will be considered miraculous even relative to yetzias mitzrayim. On the other hand, unlike our departure from Egypt, this time, it won’t be rushed. Almost as if the most natural thing to happen will be the coming of Moshiach.
It makes sense. The Messianic era is when G-d will be clearly seen in all of creation, both the miraculous and the constant. Both have a purpose, and both are the expression of one Creator.
What remains for us is to “light an additional candle each night.” We had a productive day yesterday? Great. Today add one more good deed. One more compliment, one more mitzvah.
If a little light expels a lot of darkness, then certainly does a lot of light.
Bayamim hahem, bizman hazeh.
Wishing you a wonderful Shabbos and a freilichen Chanukah,