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Writer-s-Bloc

The secret I heard last night

By Rabbi Shmuly Hecht

An Open letter to my beloved community:

 

Long ago, when I just started on my way,

There was light,

I felt Joy,

It was a time I called day.

 

Naturally though as it does over time,

Darkness arrived,

It was a time I called night.

 

I sat down to think.

There must be a way to continue on this street,

despite all the darkness that I'm starting to meet?

 

After a while, I picked up my head.

 

I saw a lamppost.

 

All around it there was light.

There was peace.

There was joy.

Even in the middle of such a dark and dreadful night.

 

Near the lamp,

it felt just like day,

Like back when I started to go on my way.

 

I spent some time, in his sparkling light,

and then continued going because it was bright.

 

The sun was shining, a new day appeared,

For a very long time,

The goodness of light,

Was getting so bright,

There was no night in sight

___

But all of a sudden a night descended,

The day that was forever seemed to have ended

 

The darkness I saw made me feel low,

It seemed it may dim every last glow,

 

But right there near me, that lamppost I greet,

Amidst all the darkness a light in the street,

Standing so firm and shining so bright,

One who was weak found strength

at his feet

 

When I stood there in awe of that lamppost that night,

He told me a secret he thought I would like,

 

You're just like me he started to say,

Just turn on your light and make the night bright,

The darkness will leave,

without any fight

 

When people despair because darkness appeared,

You know what I do?

I just shine from up here!

 

With love and with care, all you must do,

Is stand where you are

And shine light around you

___

Then lo and behold,

It was raining,

And hailing,

And totally draining,

A night had arrived

That was not in my training,

 

If I told you what happened it would bring you to tears,

It was a night we haven't seen for thousands of years,

 

Where's that lamppost? I can't see it anymore,

Have the heavens shattered?

I hear a loud roar,

There's screaming and yelling it's chaos once more!

 

The storm is so strong, where'd that lamppost go?

Wasn't he here when the storm first did blow?

 

And then it lit me!

 

That secret last night!

 

Your life on this street was given to you,

For one reason only,

Don't get confused

 

Goodness and light must come from you,

To light up the night and spirits renew,

If darkness appears,

You know just what to do!

 

I wiped off the tears,

Put a smile on my face

I let my light shine,

Where people come and pace,

All over the streets,

Where my post divinely was placed

 

Oh that bold lamppost,

You're light I now see,

All because of a decision that I made in me,

The fog was just blocking,

You never left me really,

 

You lifted me up with such wisdom and patience,

With sensitivity and love,

being so gracious

 

You just showed me MY light,

And told me to shine,

Instead of pointing out every problem of mine

Now I can see,

All kinds of lamps

Shining their light

Lifting spirits that damped

 

Feelings of joy,

As more lampposts glow

The numbers are growing,

Statistics they show

 

With our efforts I see,

7 billion lamps,

Brightening this night,

With trillions of amps

 

It'll outdo the virus

It'll banish all pain

 

Until there is no more night,

Because of our light

It will be bright,

Forever.

Rabbi Shmuly Hecht is director with the Chabad Okanagan. Find his blog at mylivinglamppost.com.



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