Terrible things are happening to Am Yisrael right now and anyone who pays attention understands that we are in "the end of days" and these are the birthpangs of Mashiach but why must we suffer for Mashiach to come?
Rabbi Alexander Aryeh Mandelbaum explains in his book Redemption Unfolding;
The Chevlei Moshiach are geared to bring Bnei Yisroel to a higher level of prayer, and thereby to become more aware of our total dependence on the Creator. As Chazal teach us (Pirkei DeRebbi Eliezer, 32): "Why was he called Yishmoel? In the End of Days, HaShem [El] will listen [yishma] to the cries [of Yisroel] as a result of Bnei Yishmoel's actions in the Land."
The Chofetz Chaim wrote (Kuntras Likutei Amarim, Chapter 10): "All the many troubles that have fallen upon us, from which we have still not been saved, are because we don't scream and increase our prayers in response to them. If we had prayed [properly], we would not have returned empty handed. And it is not enough that [one] prays the Shemoneh Esreh prayer three times each day; several times daily he must pour out his requests in solitude, in his house, from the depths of his heart. The three regular prayers are so routine that one does not really concentrate during them --which is not the case if each person would contemplate in solitude his own plight... then he would pour out his heart like water to HaShem. Such a prayer would emerge with very deep intent, with a broken heart, and with great humility. Such a prayer will certainly not go unanswered...!"
Just as HaShem listened to the groaning voices of Bnei Yisroel in Egypt, so will Hashem listen to our cries today. In the merit of that prayer and crying, HaShem will speedily bring the Redemption, as is writen in the Zohar (Part 2, 12b): "Rav Yitzchak said that the salvation of Israel depends only on crying... as is written (Yirmiyahu 31:8): '...with crying they will come, and with lamentations I will lead them.'"