02 Feb Rabbi Hillel Skolnik’s Torah Spark for Parashat Yitro 5778 – Weekend of February 2-3, 2018
This Shabbat we read from Parashat Yitro which contains the Torah’s account of the revelation at Mount Sinai. While the experience of revelation includes seeing the smoke on Mount Sinai and feeling the rumbling of mountain, the most famous part is the Israelites experiencing the presence of God and the relating of the Ten Commandments to the Israelites. What we often overlook is that while the Israelites were no doubt inspired by what they had heard, they were also scared out of their minds and were petrified to go anywhere near where they perceived God might be. Nevertheless they were able to perceive God’s presence and be inspired by what they experienced. It reminds us all that life changing moments happen not only in those times when we are at our happiest and most calm but from those instances when we are most scared and most in awe of our surroundings. The trick in both cases is to use those moments to make our lives, and the lives of those whom we love, better.
Rabbi Hillel Skolnik