Tomorrow night at sundown is the first night of Chanukah. Chanukah is a relatively minor holiday in the Jewish calendar, but it gets a lot of air time because of its proximity to Christmas.
When I was a kid, I sang in the elementary school choir. (Yes, I was a geeky choir kid.) During the winter holidays, we learned many Christmas carols and performed holiday concerts at local nursing homes. Every year the fall semester and holiday season culminated in a school concert, which was usually a mix of Christmas carols and pop music. In fourth grade I decided it was time to diversify the song choices, and persuaded (or demanded, I can't remember) the choir director to give me a solo performance of the Chanukah song "Ma'oz Tsur" (Rock of Ages).
This wasn't the first time I pushed the cultural or political envelope as a kid. At age seven I refused to recite the Pledge of Allegiance because I felt it was against my religion to pray to objects (i.e. a flag), although I was willing to stand during the pledge out of respect. The following year I led a revolt among the students to change the school's no-pants dress code, even though I have always been a girly-girl who loves skirts and dresses. It was the principle of the thing.
But of all God's miracles large and small,
The most miraculous one of all
Is the one I thought could never be…
excerpt from "Miracle of Miracles," in the musical Fiddler on the Roof
When we believe in the possibility of moving beyond our own internalized foes and demons, when we survive traumas and difficulties that seem insurmountable, when we acknowledge without succumbing to our own limits and fears, when we see ourselves as unwavering manifestations of an unnameable Divine, these are all miracles.
What miracles could you imagine for your own life right now?