A Jewish school once held a competition to see who could tell the biggest lie.

This was the winner:

I walked into shul, and they were blowing the shofar and all the men were in white, waving their lulavs, dancing with the Torahs, lighting the Chanukah candles when the Purim spielers came barging in swinging their graggers, and the kiddush was replete with apples and honey, matzah, potato latkes, cheesecake, blintzes, and, of course, cholent.

Why did this falsehood win the prize? Because it is surely the biggest lie of all to suggest that Judaism has only one holiday!

Just the month of Tishrei alone is filled with a range of festivals, from the solemn fasting on Yom Kippur to the celebratory feasting on Simchat Torah. And as the year progresses, we have Chanukah and Purim, Pesach and Shavuot, each with its own traditions, symbols and messages. And our weekly Shabbat has its own beautiful observances, too.

So many Jews today attend synagogue on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur only. I’ve often said that it’s no wonder they don’t come back! The services are long and somber. And there’s no Kiddush on Yom Kippur like there is on your regular Shabbat. If, instead, people would come to shul on Purim and Simchat Torah, when the atmosphere is lively and joyous, replete with singing, dancing, eating and drinking, they might enjoy it so much that they would come back regularly!

And it's not that different with life in general.

We start out with a few good friends. Then, our circles broaden and expand. We may become closer to some, and drift apart from others. Perhaps we had someone we thought was a good friend but when crunchtime came no one was home. They may have dropped us like a hot potato as soon as our fortunes soured. We call them fair-weather friends. And sometimes someone may be a dearly dedicated friend when times are tough, but nowhere to be seen when there is cause to celebrate. Are they foul-weather friends?

As life progresses, we often see more clearly who our real, true, and loyal friends are. And, as we know, a few good friends are enough to see us through life.

Let’s ask ourselves: what kind of friend are we to G‑d? Are we fair-weather friends who only visit Him when there’s something to celebrate, like a bar mitzvah or wedding? I know some people who only come to shul once a year – when they bring their kids on Simchat Torah to get flags and chocolates (and maybe a whisky for themselves). And we all know of the many who only come for the Days of Awe, or G‑d forbid, a funeral. Are they foul-weather Jews?

I think both types are missing out. It is a shame that more of us don’t experience the full flavor of Jewish communal life. The Simchat Torah Jew would tap into so many deep, meaningful memories at a Yom Kippur yizkor memorial service, and the Rosh Hashanah Jew would draw joy and delight from the spirited energy of a genuine Simchat Torah. And while many are familiar with the moving melody of Kol Nidrei, there are so many beautiful songs and melodies we sing as part of Hallel throughout Sukkot too. If you’ve never seen the lulav parade around the bimah or the vigorous dancing on Simchat Torah, you simply cannot imagine what you are missing.

Tapping into the rich kaleidoscope of our traditions throughout the year would give us a much more genuine and satisfying picture of our faith and our Jewish experience.

This week’s parsha, Ha’azinu, is written in the most poetic language. Even its typography in the Torah scroll is unique. It is often called the Song of Ha’azinu, and it always falls during this festive month of Tishrei filled with so many of our festivals. I think that when we only participate in our traditions selectively, we are missing out on the music. The song of Torah is somewhat incomplete.

So let me suggest that we all make an effort to become all-weather Jews—true, loyal friends of G‑d Almighty. Visit Him on the Days of Awe and in the Season of our Rejoicing. Stop in during the Festival of our Freedom and the Season of the Giving of the Torah. Coming every Shabbat will make your week happier, more serene, and truly blessed. And if you’ve never built your own sukkah or bought your own etrog, consider trying it this year. It can be a powerful and memorable experience for you, your children and grandchildren.

The Jewish journey of this new year has just begun. I invite you to hop aboard Flight 5783. I promise you will enjoy the ride!