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Isn't it pretty?

Monday, November 29, 2004

Hold on to Your Dreams

I was once like you are now, and I know that it's not easy, To be calm when you've found something going on. But take your time, think a lot, Why, think of everything you've got. For you will still be here tomorrow, but your dreams may not. ---Cat Stevens I went to a shiur given by Rabbi Dovid Orlofsky the other night. I had never heard him speak before, but many people had told me what an incredible speaker he was. He lived up to his highly esteemed reputation. His message was about Chanukah, priorities and holding onto dreams.

He explained that the battle that the Maccabee's fought was one that didn't have to be - no one would have told the greatly outnumbered Jews to face a battle that couldn't be won. But the Maccabee's knew what was important, and they had a dream to defend. So they went against all common sense, they put their entire hearts into it, and they won.

Rabbi Orlofsky told us that it isn't easy to live your life like this every day; it takes a lot to hold onto your dreams. You have to figure out what is really important to be so fierce about. He spoke about a man whose family life is okay, but his dinner has to be perfect. Why? What does it matter? Put your efforts into those things that really matter; focus your sights on what you can't live without. He told the story of a single woman in her 30's who had been told by many that she was too picky, that she should let go of her dreams and just marry someone who was "fine." She asked Rabbi Orlofsky if those people were right, if she should give up on finding those traits that she was looking for in a man. He told us that he looked at her, and found that he couldn't tell her to give up her dream - because he didn't believe that she should. And a few months later, she found her dream and married. It is so easy to give up on our dreams, to not fight the hard battle, to take the easy road. But in the end, when we fight for what is really important - our dreams - we know that the battle is worth the effort.

Rabbi Orlofsky implored us, if we can't do it every day, to take the eight days of Chanukah - those days that symbolize an unwinnable battle that was won, that symbolize a miracle of dreams held tight - and fight as hard as we can for our dreams.

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