Thursday, June 9, 2016

The Gift that Keeps on Giving


 The very joyous celebration of Shavuot commemorates the giving of the greatest gift that mankind and womankind have ever received.  At Mount Sinai Moshe Rabbeinu received letter for letter from Hashem the Holy Torah.  We received our Handbook of Life that taught us exactly how to maximize our lives, in this world and beyond for all eternity.

But, what are we really celebrating?  That we received this precious gift 3328 years ago, put it in the Ark in the Synagogue and look at it once a week with pride?   Or are we celebrating the fact that we are still receiving the Torah every day and have plans of receiving it in all the coming days.

Imagine a man who buys a new suit, puts it in his closet and never wears it.  Does he get great pleasure just knowing he has such a beautiful suit, or did he buy it to get practical use out of it?  He likes the feel of it and he just loves how great he looks in this new suit.  It is silly to think that he only wanted to have it instead of “I can’t wait to use this new garment.”

There were several products over the years that advertised: “the gift that keeps on giving” (I don't do product endorsements, unless Hashem is the manufacturer).  I can't think of a better description of the Torah than “the world’s greatest gift that keeps on giving and giving and giving.”  In other words, leaving it in the Ark and periodically admiring it is like winning the lottery, but never spending the money.  Money is useless – what you can buy with money to enhance your life is its true value.  Torah by itself and not using it every day is a shameful waste.  Studying this most precious gift from Hashem is the total answer to happiness and success.  Please, don’t hang it in the closet; wear it and enjoy it beyond your wildest dreams.

Have a very happy Shavuot and remember: we are not celebrating the gift we received thousands of years ago, but the gift that we will receive every day in the coming year by making new discoveries in the greatest gift ever, the Torah. 

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