The Light of Shabbos

Rebbe Nachman of Breslov taught…

“Charity only comes to its full illumination by virtue of the light of Shabbos.
(Likutei Moharan I:17)


What does this mean to me?
This sounds so beautiful, but what, really, is the light of Shabbos? Rebbe Nachman explains that the light of Shabbos is that of faith in G-d’s creation of the universe. The weekly observance of Shabbos allows us to constantly refresh our faith in this fundamental principle of Judaism.

When we reaffirm this faith, it alters our relationship with our activities of the working week; since G-d is the source of all that exists and all of our ability to act, He is the Owner of everything—including the earnings gained by our labors. The light of Shabbos that illuminates charity is the awareness that I am only the trustee over G-d’s assets, and it is my duty to share them as He directs. When I’m really aware of this, it is isn’t me giving, but G-d; I’m just a trustworthy custodian.


A prayer:

Dear G-d, may my charity be founded
Upon fulfilling Your will
So it is truly precious in Your eyes.

May I help deserving people
With what they need for Shabbos,
And let me have worthy guests at my table.
For it is the light of Shabbos
That enhances the beauty of our giving.

(Between me and You, p. 54)

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Author: Yehudis Golshevsky

Mrs. Yehudis Golshevsky is a graduate of Yavne Teacher’s Seminary in Cleveland and SUNY Buffalo. She is a Breslov Chassidiste who lives with her very patient and forgiving family in Jerusalem and has taught Breslov Chassidus (and many other subjects) and worked in Torah publishing for nearly twenty years. Recent projects include the new Holocaust history textbook, “Witness to History;” Erez Moshe Doron’s commentary on The Exchanged Children; content and curricula for Project Derech of Toronto; translations of Rabbi Berland’s lessons and prayers for; editing of the stories for Daf Digest and Mishnah Berurah Digest; and editing of the weekly translations of Rav Itche Meir Morgenstern’s shiurim for Toras Chochom. In her spare time, she does battle with foreign bureaucracy and general pin-headedness in Ukraine so that she can have the privilege of bringing other women to Uman and other kivrei tzaddikim. She also likes to joke around—just ask her students.

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