The Freedom Miracle – by Baruch Cohon
Every year the festival of Passover reminds us Jews that our ancestors were once slaves in Egypt. And every year the anniversary of the Emancipation proclamation reminds Black Americans that some of their ancestors were once slaves in the United States. Many centuries separate the two liberations. Circumstances were quite different. Yet a parallel miracle distinguished both events. What were those miracles?
One possible miracle of the Exodus was when the Red Sea was split and the fugitive slaves crossed on dry land.
That’s not the one.
A possible miracle of Emancipation was when Lincoln and the North won the Civil War. That’s not it either.
The freedom miracle that stands out for me was illustrated dramatically right here in the USA during the movement against Jim Crow laws. An activist in that cause indicated Martin Luther King and said: “We’ve got our Moses.”
The Divine inspiration that impelled Moshe Rabbeynu – Moses our Teacher – to lead his people to freedom at the Red Sea and to accept their Constitution at Mount Sinai was the same miracle as the one that motivated Dr. King. That is the freedom miracle. It implies responsibility.
We have enemies, now just like in Moses’ time. Human beings can be right and good, or wrong and evil, at any time. Yesterday they shook our hands. Tomorrow they might stab us in the back. How do we defeat them? Can we ever expect a new miracle? Maybe we can.
By working with our positive neighbors, we can seek the freedom miracle now, just as our ancestors sought it in their day. Just by reaching for a hint of that Divine inspiration, we can still hope to improve the world and find future blessing. You are not Moses and neither am I. Not Dr. King either. But we can learn from them and never give up on the freedom miracle.
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