This week we begin Sefer Shemot and the story of Bnai Yisrael in earnest. In no time at all, our people are enslaved in Mitzrayim and Moshe Rabbeinu finds his role as our leader and messenger from Hashem to deliver the people from slavery.
There is not a day that goes by when we do not mention Yetziat Mitzrayim (In fact it is an obligation - for those doing Daf Yomi) as the Exodus is a central part of our narrative and history. Even so, we do not define ourselves as slaves or as victims. Instead, we use this experience to remember the ways of Hashem, to remember where we came from and to remember the plight of those who are downtrodden.
Today, when we face different types of oppression and opposition, it is key that we do not lose sight of our core values as Jews. We have to take care of ourselves, but we also have to be a light unto the nations.