Never leave your phone out. Obviously, this could be the beginning of many dilemmas, but mine isn’t what you might expect. The kids saw an open application, otherwise known as the Tooth Fairy App.
It’s a great gadget. You take a picture of your sleeping child and superimpose a realistic sticker of the tooth fairy. Any doubting children are stunned with the evidence. Well, stunned until they discover how the picture came to be. Our nine-year-old is embarrassed by the conversation and our seven-year-old is now more amazed by the ingenuity of technology. Our five-year-old remains skeptical. Again, never leave your phone out.
The jury may be deliberating on visiting fairies but I’m working harder on introducing the magic of a visiting Elijah. Elijah the prophet is said to be the harbinger of the Messiah—the bearer of hope. And this year, I’m focused not on plagues, but rather the light that will lead us out of the darkness. A light that feels so very close.
There’s a story about a wealthy man that comes to the rabbi and complains about never seeing Elijah on Passover night. The rabbi instructs the man to go spend the entirety of Pesach with the poorest family in town. And in spending Pesach together, the wealthy man should provide food, wine, and other necessities for the week. Passover comes and goes, and the wealthy man returns to the rabbi. “I still didn’t see Elijah! What was the purpose of going to that family’s home?” The rabbi held up a mirror to the man’s face and said, “This year, for that family, Elijah certainly visited their home. Elijah is looking at you in the mirror.”
We all hold in our hearts the capacity to be someone else’s Elijah; someone else’s beacon of hope. Do my kids believe in the tooth fairy? Maybe yes, maybe no. But more importantly, do they believe in Elijah? Doesn’t seem to be an app for that. No need. For the human beings that lift the spirits of another, for the many that make us smile, for those that inspire us to be our best, you are Elijah.
I believe Elijah will be found in many homes this Pesach. Reminding us that hope is closer than we think.