This weeks parsha, Yitro, begins with Yitro (Moshe's father in law) hearing all that Hashem had done for Moshe and The Jewish people. Rashi (18:1) quotes the Gemara that asks, what did Yitro hear that prompted him to come? He answers that Yitro heard about the splitting of the sea and the war against Amalek, and when he heard about these miracles he decided: the place to be is with the Jewish people.

Rav Eliyahu Lopian, in Lev Eliyahu, explains what prompted Rashi to fill in the picture for us, and tell us why Yitro came at that point.

In order for a person to pick up and leave his home and family, we can assume that he must have heard something that others weren't privy to. Only this would explain why he, but no one else, came. What did Yitro hear that noone else did?!

Our Sages explain that, in fact, Yitro heard exactly what everyone else had also heard! The entire world heard about the splitting of the sea and the war against Amalek. They heard but didn't move. Yitro heard, was willing to turn his whole life upside down, and came to join the Jewish people!

What was unique about Yisro? He was a person who was relentless in his quest for truth. He had tried serving every single idol and religion in the world and had found only emptiness. He was never satisfied with anything less than absolute truth. Most people settle with something, even though it's less than perfect. It fits into the lifestyle, it's what was expected from you, it's what you had always planned for your self, it's convenient, it's inexpensive. The common denominator usually is that it's the easy path to take.

By the splitting of the sea it says, (15:14) "Nations heard and trembled with fear", but the next morning they were back to bacon and eggs. None were willing to make any meaningful changes in their life. After a few days it was all but forgotten. Yitro heard and came. He would never be the same person again. He made changes in his life which swept through millennium.

That's impressive.

Shabbat Shalom!

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