The Overflowing Cup | IFCJ
Skip Navigation

The Overflowing Cup

“I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery.” — Exodus 20:2

This month marks one of the most ancient and holiest of Jewish celebrations, Pesach, or Passover. It is a celebration of God’s redemption of His people, Israel, from bondage, and freedom is a theme underlying the celebration. Please enjoy this collection of timeless devotions from my father, Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein, on this sacred observance. – Yael Eckstein, President

Find out how you can help thousands of needy Jewish elderly and families in during Passover.

Are you a pessimist or an optimist? Believe it or not, one day, according to Jewish tradition, God will want to know.

The Jewish sages teach there are several questions each person is asked when his or her time on Earth comes to an end. Among those questions are “were you an honest person?” and “did you make time to study God’s Word?” One of them is also “did you anticipate salvation?” In other words, were you an optimist? Did you anticipate that things could get better and that God would help you?

You may be thinking is that really fair? How can God expect us to have a rosy outlook on life all the time? We all know people who seem to be born that way – always smiling, always with a cheerful disposition. But then there are some who seemingly have been born on the opposite end of the spectrum. As one person once said, “I don’t just see the glass as half-empty instead of half full. I see the glass as half empty and worry that someone is going to come along and knock it over!”

Some of us are just drawn toward thinking negatively. Is that really a crime? According to the First Commandment, the answer is yes!

Remember the First Commandment in its entirety? “I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery” (Exodus 20:2). More importantly, think about what is not said in this commandment. God does not refer to Himself as the Creator of the world, even though that might have been a more obvious choice. Instead, He commands that we know Him as the God who brought the children of Israel out of Egypt. Why? Because we are commanded to know God not just as the Creator of the world, but as the Savior of our lives!

We are commanded to believe in a God who hears our prayers and cares deeply for us. We are instructed to believe in a God who can and will help us out of our own personal bondage, our own trials and difficulties. So can God command us to be optimistic about life? Yes, because to believe in the God who took the Israelites out of Egypt is to believe that God can perform miracles for us, too! He expects that level of faith and commitment from us.

So next time you come across that proverbial glass, don’t see it as half-empty or even as half-full. See it as filling up and believe that it will run over! As it says in Psalm 23: my cup overflows” (v.5).

During this holy season, thousands of needy Jewish elderly and families in Israel and the former Soviet Union can’t afford the basics to celebrate Passover. Find out how you can help these precious Jewish souls today.

Hebrew Word of the Day
April 10, 2019
Theme: Home & Family

Mekarer —


The Bitter and the Sweet

April 19, 2019

God promised that there would be bitterness, but then there would also be blessings.

Read More


On the Frontlines of Faith: The Historical and Spiritual Bond Between African-Americans and Jews

Learn more about the historic link between African-Americans and the Jewish community dating back to the Civil Rights Movement in the 1960s in our latest free educational resource. Download your free copy today.

Download Now


Yael visits Edna with $25 Food Box distribution for Passover

Passover Approaching!

Tomorrow at sundown, Jews around the world will begin the sacred observance of Passover, a time that should be full of joy and hope. The harsh reality is that far too many are going without food, clothing, medicines, and other basic necessities. Please join with The Fellowship in these final hours before the sacred season begins. Your gift today will be a blessing of nourishment and comfort for a suffering Jewish person or family.

Donate Now