I would like to respectfully request a birthday present for the Jewish people for Shavuot. We became a great people on this day over 3,000 years ago. Hashem, there is nothing like Your Torah. Every sedra, every word, every letter. To say that the Torah is chock full of meaning would be the ultimate understatement. The Torah energizes us, it renews us, it dignifies us, it is our entire world. We meditate on the Torah’s teachings day and night continuously. We are eternally grateful. The Torah is not the end of the process, it is the first fruits, as we are reminded on the Feast of Weeks. Shavuot, the Giving of the Torah, is a birthday of sorts to Bnei Yisrael. And this year I am going to ask for a special birthday present for the Jewish people and for all of mankind. We need the geula shleima, the complete redemption of your world, and we need it now. The sick will be healed, the blind will see, the deaf will hear, we’ll all finally be free, no more wars, a world of true shalom, geula hayom, it’s our only true home.
The makkot (plagues) with which You took us out of Mitzrayim, Hashem, what could anyone say. We were slaves to Pharaoh and you saved us. Kriyat Yam Suf, (the splitting of the sea), to this day we stand in complete awe of this miracle that defeated the entire Egyptian army and completely ended the slavery. We walked through on dry land. But, at the risk of sounding thankless, I need to say “lo dayeinu.” It does not suffice for us. We need geula shleima, the complete redemption of your world, and we need it now. That’s an infinitive for the human race. It’s not about this or that time in history. We inherently need geula shleima and we need it now, whether we know it or not. The sick will be healed, the blind will see, the deaf will hear, we’ll all finally be free, no more wars, a world of true shalom, geula hayom, it’s our only true home.
That’s what I would like to request for Shavuot, the birthday of Bnei Yisrael. Ice cream and cheesecake? We are thrilled. Wow, to remind us of the land of milk and honey, Eretz Yisrael, reestablished in our time. We are eternally grateful. And the all-night Torah sessions are so inspirational that the Torah we learn lasts for the whole year. Still, lo dayeinu. It does not suffice for us.
Hashem, there is truly no place like home, and leave it to the Torah to remind us of our true home. Yes, Eretz Yisrael in the physical sense, but in the spiritual sense it is geula. We need geula shleima. The sick will be healed, the blind will see, the deaf will hear, we’ll all finally be free, no more wars, a world of true shalom, geula hayom, it’s our only true home.
No more wars, no more destruction, no more calamity for the entire world. We need this. We can’t simply accept that anything less is somehow good enough. How many people must die in war before we finally get the point that all sides of the wars are losing? Oh, we are tough as nails, we don’t cry and we are endlessly proud of those whom we have lost for their service. But isn’t it possible to be endlessly proud of having a world that is actually worthy of those with the most dedication? Isn’t having a world of true shalom, where human beings care about one another, the greatest tribute to those who fought for those ideals? The sick will be healed, the blind will see, the deaf will hear, we’ll all finally be free, no more wars, a world of true shalom, geula hayom, it’s our only true home.
Healthcare, it’s amazing to see the advancements that have taken place. What seemed impossible a decade ago now is the commonplace. We as a human race are learning more and more about healthcare. The dedication of the medical community is ever amazing to see and experience. They have devoted their entire lives to treating in the short-term and finding cures in the long-term for what ails humanity. Others devote themselves to raising much-needed funds, often waking up at the crack of dawn for programs and events that attract a great many people, and succeed in raising cash for the common cause of defeating the voluminous number of diseases that continue to plague mankind. The human tragedy from disease is a completely underreported story. The tragedy is unspeakable to people of all ages, with millions of infants facing life-threatening diseases throughout the world. Disease is always experienced in the micro sense, the individual and their families. In golus, the individual and their family are too easily discounted or underplayed. The walkathons and other -athons are great but they don’t suffice. Lo dayeinu. It does not suffice for us. The cholim (the sick) need geula shleima. The sick will be healed, the blind will see, the deaf will hear, we’ll all finally be free, no more wars, a world of true shalom, geula hayom, it’s our only true home.
A better golus, we are for that. Any move forward is greatly appreciated. Technology, yes, in the service of Hashem. Computers, cell phones, GPS satellite systems, the cloud, the business advancements that assist all of mankind. Of course, it’s great as long as it’s in the service of Hashem. But lo dayeinu, it doesn’t suffice for us. The world will never be redeemed with technology. Only the unseen, Hashem’s Presence, and our ability to connect to Hashem’s Presence regardless of the circumstances and appearances can possibly be a proper vehicle for Hashem to bring the world that is the destiny of all of mankind, geula shleima. As the Neviim have told us, “Not through power nor through might but by My Presence,” says Hashem, Master of Legions. Please, though we are unworthy, Hashem, with rachamim (mercy) according to Your Yud Gimel Midot (13 attributes of mercy) for all of mankind, please let that time be now. Chag Sameach!
By Yehoshua (Alan) Frankel
Yehoshua Frankel is the ten-year host of radio program on Talkline Communications. He is the author of From Golus to Geula, The Miracle of Torah.