Section: Moadim   Category: Pesach
Happiness At The Seder During A Depression
We celebrate Yetzias Mitzrayim with royalty like Kings.  We rejoice on the night of our freedom.  But what about those of us who have been laid off or feel our livelihoods are teetering on the edge of a very steep cliff, and have seen our life savings wiped out?  Can we find joy in the seder night and the story of Yetzias Mitzrayim?  Granted out plight is still the best its been in the past 2000 years, but we can't pay our mortgage, tuition, and grocery bill with a history book.  And it surely won't calm our fear about our very uncertain future.  Where should we find the hidden light in this story of old?

Avadim Hayinu L'Paroh B'Mitzrayim.  There was a time that we were slaves.  We did not our own selves.  Moshe's role and negotiations with Paroh was to create an identity for Am Yisroel.  The Bnei Yisroel needed to be torn out from the fabric of Mitzrayim to which they had lost their identity.  Hope?  There was no hope.  A slave is bereft of all hope, and certainly when they have been enslaved for many generations.  They had every reason to be depressed and sad.

Nevertheless Hashem came and rescued them.  Yes it happened.  It was beyond a fantasy.  It was too much to dream for.  Ever since then Yetzias Mitzrayim is our legacy.  We have been persecuted, we have been plundered, ostracized, murdered, and expelled in almost every stop we have made along the way.  Yet history teaches us that at the end there is always a Yetzias Mitzrayim.  We know that Hashem is good to his word and it will always happen.  The light will always shine again no matter how far we have fallen.

It is the same with our personal lives.  Our lives are a series of ups and downs.  Some of us more steep than others.  No ones life has been perfect in all respects.  At one point or another we have all had a problem that we thought we would never survive intact.  And yet here we are V'Hi She'amda, we are still standing!  Somehow all the bills got paid, the rifts have mended, the troubles faded from memory.

B'tzais Yisroel Mi'Mitzrayim, it happens just like in Mitzrayim.  Hayam Ra'ah Vayanos, the sea of troubles that threaten to engulf us runs away.  HaHarim Rakdu K'Eilim, the great mountains standing in our way that are impossible to scale, scamper away like rams.  How?  Milifnei Adon Chuli Aretz, we stand before the master of the world who can turn the world upside down in an instant.

This year let's blur the timelines just a shade and raise a Kos of freedom to the past and also to the not too distant future.  The present?  Two out of three is not so bad... and besides it will be gone in a heartbeat.