Although several us have already heard this week’s lecture by Rabbi Ephraim Shapiro, I felt the need to share a story that he told.
The famous store Tiffany’s of Manhattan was broken into at one point and, when the breach was discovered, the store had to close for an entire day. If the thieves who broke in had taken one or two of the expensive items, why would we need to close the store for a full day? The answer was that those who entered the store somehow evaded the alarm system, remained in the store, and proceeded to exchange price tags throughout the store so that an item marked at $15,000 might now read $150!
Fixing this type of breach required the store to remain closed for a full day to correct the pricing.
In today’s challenging world we run the risk of changing priorities, and items of great importance are relegated to a lowly position. At the same time, trivial items that are very popular but have limited value may be placed on the top rung of a person’s value system.
This past week, we finished celebrating Chanukah at school and witnessed the dedication of teachers, parents, students, and the administration toward spiritual items of tremendous value. Classroom activities, Chanukah in a Box, and PHDS performance on video all showed our priorities of enhancing our personal faith and understanding of the chag. They remind us that just as Hashem performed miracles in the Bais Hamikdosh, He can perform them for each one of us in our daily lives.
Chanukah has passed, but its messages live on forever. We understand the value of Torah and mitzvos and the eternal lessons learned from Chanukah. May we all be blessed with tremendous Yiddishe nachas from our children and extended families. Best wishes for an enjoyable winter break.
Rabbi Peretz Scheinerman