These final days leading up to the geulah shleimah are very difficult.  This period of time, known as chevlei Mashiach, is and will be so terrible that  some of our Sages said “Let him come, but let me not see him” (Sanhedrin 98b).  Everyone is suffering physically, emotionally and mentally. The keys to surviving this time and, be’ezrat Hashem, greeting Mashiach are bitahon and emunah.  We need to take every opportunity to strengthen ourselves in these two areas.
The essence of bitahon--the mitzva of trust and confidence in Hashem—is to know that everything comes from Hashem.  True, we engage--and we are commanded to engage--in activities directed towards achieving certain results in the physical world.  But we must realize that these actions are not the true causes of the results which seem to flow from them.  The true cause is always the will of Hashem.  We are instructed to pursue economic and medical activities and so on, only in order to disguise this basic fact.  If it was obvious that everything came directly from Hashem, there would be too little scope for behira.

A person who sees the world in these terms and has perfect faith that everything (except behira—“moral choices”) comes from Hashem will never succumb to worry.  He knows that Hashem has already decided the amount of worldly goods he needs for his spiritual service and there is, therefore, nothing to worry about.  A person only worries about a situation which he thinks he can change.  If the outcome is accepted as inevitable, a person may be apprehensive, but he does not worry.  This is why people are not normally worried about the fact that they are going to die.  A person who knows that all that happens to him comes from Hashem and nothing he does in the physical sphere can possible change it has no cause to worry.

Shabbat is given to us to help us absorb this truth.  On Shabbat, we desist from practical activity to remind ourselves that this kind of activity has no causative effect.  We should see the reality of the spiritual within the physical and dedicate all our activity to Hashem:  “It is a Shabbat for Hashem your God.”

When the Torah says “six days you shall labor and do all your work,” our Rabbis say this means that when Shabbat enters, “it shall be as if all our work were done.” Even if a person is faced with a great worry, when Shabbat comes in his worry should evaporate.  How can this happen?  Because he has already worked on himself to recognize and understand that Hashem is the sole cause of all that happens.  Secure in this knowledge, he will trust in Hashem’s goodness and feel confident that Hashem has already prepared everything so that the outcome will be the best possible outcome for him.  Shabbat will be the test.  If his worries truly evaporate with the onset of Shabbat, it is clear that he has internalized this lesson.  He no longer worries about what he did or might have done during the week, or what might happen next week, but places his trust in Hashem above. (Strive for Truth, Rabbi Eliyahu E. Dessler)

May all of Am Yisrael have a wonderful Shabbat and merit to receive the geulah shleimah speedily in our days.

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