You are a flowing, gushing river. A bubbling spring coming from the earth.
Jews, we believe that rivers, they’re not real rivers if they stop flowing less than every seven years. It’s just water. Just, standing water, even if it seems like it’s moving.
We need to move, because if we don’t we’re not Jews, we’re not people, and we’re not fulfilling our purpose in life.
Did you know that the human body rejuvenates every single atom, every single cell in its body every seven years? Do you realize what that means? You are literally, physically a different person every seven years. Do you think that’s a coincidence? G-d doesn’t make coincidences. A Jew = a river.
There’s something we can learn from this, something that G-d wants us to hear when these facts present themselves to us.
Sometimes, we think that the world stops with us. That it’s focused on us, that we are an end in and of ourselves.
What defines a river? A river is defined by its movement. If it stops, it’s not a river. It’s a pool.
Sometimes, we want to be the pool, we want the rivers to flow into us. Meaning, we want everyone, everything, to serve our own lives. And we want to stop and take it all in. We want all the benefits of the world, without sharing our own water.
But what would it mean if we stopped? If the world stopped when it reached us, if all action ended at us?
It would mean we are dead. It would mean we are no better than the tepid pool of water, gathering bacteria and worms, getting eaten up because we have nothing better to offer to the world.
And that’s how we become an idol. An idol of silver and gold, an idol that expects everything out of the world, and yet gives nothing back. Because it is nothing. It is dead.
Celebrities are called idols for a reason. Most of them are dead. Because they take the fame, the credit, the money of the world, that are being showered upon them and they use them for their own ends. Even charitable donations become a way to increase their own stature.
These idols, they’re just as dead as the ones made of wood.
The sad part is, the majority of the world thinks death is life.
“I call heaven and earth to witness you today: I have put before you life and death, blessing and curse – therefore choose life!” (Deut. 30:19).
When G-d gives us this commandment, he’s not talking about suicide. He means, choose what is real. Choose to be a river, an action, a verb. Don’t try and be a celebrity (for the sake of celebrity), don’t chase after the vane things in life, fame, glory, all that. The fixed, dead things in this world. Chase after truth. After G-d.
When we do that, when we gush, when we flow, we’ll be more alive than the richest celebrity, the most popular supermodel.
Because we’ll be a river. We’ll be blessed. We’ll be alive.