CTN Torah Minute – Seder Thoughts from a Great, Great Uncle

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Jewish Inspiration in 60 seconds or less, by Rabbi Moshe Katz

Hi,

Hope you’re having a great day!
The Seder is coming!
We talk so much about the Matzah and bitter herbs.
And for very good reason.
But also on the Seder plate?
Is an egg.
And that poor egg doesn’t get so much attention!
But Jewish tradition has many insights into its message.
(As someone said, we certainly don’t eat it because we’re hungry!)
Here’s what one great Chassidic rabbi said.
The egg has a dual existence.
On one hand?
It serves as food and a source of nourishment.
But the egg has a much greater potential.
Because if it breaks out of its shell?
It can go to a whole different level.
The egg can become a form of life!
… And every Jewish family sitting at its Seder table?
Is like an egg.
Sure, we can celebrate the fact that we’re free.
That were not persecuted. That we live in the “Land of the free”.
But we have another choice.
To become really alive Jewishly.
We can live Judaism by studying Torah. By making Shabbat special.
By doing more acts of kindness. By becoming better spouses.
And if we inspire our children (and grandchildren!)?
We can help insure the continuity of the Jewish People.
… I’m on a personal high!
I recently became a “great, great uncle”!
My great nephew Shmulie and his wife Margalit had a baby boy.
The baby’s name?
Yehuda Simes!
(Many of you will instantly know who this baby is named after.
For those who are new to the Torah Minute?
My nephew Yehuda was married to my niece Shaindel.
Eight years ago, their family was in a horrific car accident.
And Yehuda was left a quadriplegic.
Over the years I’ve shared stories of his deep faith.
And how he used his challenge to inspire thousands of people all over the world.
(And about his amazing wife!)
He is sorely missed. But his memory continues to inspire people all over the world.
… I think of Yehuda often.
But the egg really makes me think of him.
Yehuda was “confined to a wheel chair”.
But he refused to let it confine him.
Or define him!
And like the egg?
He broke out of his shell.
And really lived!
I’ve quoted Yehuda often.
But perhaps his biggest gem was…
“This body thing?
It’s over rated!”
He never saw himself as a “quadriplegic”.
Yehuda saw himself as a “neshama”.
As a spiritual person…
Whose body just doesn’t work!
… So Mazal Tov to my niece Shaindel and to little Yehuda’s parents.
And when we look at the egg on our Seder plate?
We should be inspired by Yehuda’s memory.
“Let’s break out of our shells” and really live!
Have a wonderful meaningful Passover,

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Rabbi Moshe Katz | Director | rabbikatz@torahnetwork.org
Chicago Torah Network | THE CTN CENTER | 2832 W. Touhy Avenue | Chicago, IL 60645
773 761 0400, ext. 201 | fax: 773 761 9262 | www.torahnetwork.org

One comment

  1. Esther Hertz · · Reply

    Beautiful! Mazal tov!

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