Around the Shabbos Table – A Taste of Gan Eden Right Now – Ki Savo

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The Torah (Devarim 28:47) warns: Because you did not serve HaShem, your G-d, with happiness and goodness of the heart [terrible consequences will occur]. If a person is  putting in a great effort to do Mitzvoth, isn’t that the main thing? Why should there be such severe implications for a lack of gladness in serving HaShem?

Imagine someone, who already has a fine house, takes on a project to build a second house. Since there is nothing compelling him to build the house, he will not put his full heart into its completion. Even worse, he won’t trouble himself to learn the various techniques and numerous details required for construction. He will proceed in a lackadaisical manner – and the ultimate result will be an unfinished eyesore.

Conversely, someone who needs a shelter for his family will put his full energy and intelligence into the project. He is so motivated to get a roof over his head, that he  will not even feel the massive and intense effort that he is making.  In good time, a new house will be prepared for his family.

Likewise, if a person does not impress upon himself the bounty of blessings that will be showered upon him for each Mitzvah that he performs – he will undertake Divine service with a half-hearted attitude. His lack of awareness of the pleasantness of Mitzvoth will leave him with no desire to perform them. He  will have to force himself to do Mitzvoth – begrudgingly; and even worse, he will neglect to attend to many of the important details of his obligations.

However, a person who appreciates the beauty and pleasantness that emanates from Mitzvoth – both in this world, as well as, the World to Come – will approach Divine service with love and happiness. His is so impassioned to perform Mitzvoth and study Torah, that he doesn’t even sense the effort that he is putting forth. He will give his best to HaShem, because he knows HaShem will bless him with the greatest delights.

May the sublime pleasantness of  Torah and Mitzvoth always shine within our souls! (based on the commentary of Ohr RaShaz, the Saba M’Kelm)

Today: Visualize the light of Gan Eden shines upon you with each Mitzvah that you perform

Copyright © 2010 by Rabbi Zvi Miller and the Salant Foundation

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