When Jacob heard that his son, Joseph, was alive and well in Egypt, he exclaimed, “My son Joseph is still alive!” The word for still can also mean “more,” teaching us that there was something unique about Joseph being alive in Egypt over Jacob being alive in Charan.
They were both in similar situations, raising a family in a non-Jewish environment. What was special about Joseph's interactions with the evil around him?
Firstly, we know that in each generation, evil becomes more prevalent and visible. Additionally, our involvement with it becomes deeper and more powerful too. Therefore, as years go by, it’s much stronger to stay strong.
Even more than that, however, is a distinct difference between father and son.
In Charan, Jacob was able to live amongst the evil and still raise his family. Joseph was the ruler of Egypt. He couldn’t simply stay away from the evil. He controlled the situation. He was a complete master over the darkness.
And this is the reason why we are able to withstand our exile, too. Joseph showed us how to take control of the situation and rise above it all. That’s our job in our day-to-day life. Not only can we prevent the evil and bad from affecting us, but we can control it and be more powerful than it, too.
Conquer the darkness by adding light! Light the Shabbat candles tomorrow at 4:14 PM.