The War in Israel Part 11: The Power of Ashrei II

As we have been writing, every single tefilah, especially Minchah, is a precious gift and opportunity that we cannot afford to lose. Hashem is “depending” on us to offer sincere and heartfelt tefilos so He can deliver the kindness He desires to shower upon us and the worlds. Our brothers and sisters are depending on us. Our loved ones are depending on us.

Ashrei also brings us closer to Hashem through greater praise of Hashem and recognition of His lovingkindness. Before the Shemoneh Esrei of Shacharis and Arvis, we mention the miracles and kindness that Hashem bestowed upon us when He took us out of Mitzrayim.

Rashi (B’rachos 4b), quoting the Talmud Yerushalmi, states that the reason we precede the morning and evening Shemoneh Esrei with praise is that it brings us closer to Hashem, and through that closeness, we can approach Hashem with our requests. The same can be said of Ashrei before Minchah for tefilah.

It is our hope and prayer that through a renewed focus on Ashrei, we will merit, b’ezras Hashem, to elevate our preparation for – and actual tefilah of – Minchah and merit to become a “ben Olam HaBa,” which the Gemara in B’rachos (4b) assures us of, if we say Ashrei three times daily (with proper kavanah, which results in enhanced emunah and closeness to Hashem.


שככה לו העם אשרי – Fortunate is the nation that such is its lot;

אשרי העם שה' אלוקיו – Fortunate is the nation that Hashem is its G-d.

We are truly fortunate that Hashem chose us as His treasured nation and gave us His Torah,1 which is our guide for living a fulfilling, meaningful, and happy life. This should infuse us with much joy. 

We are also fortunate to be beneficiaries of Hashem’s goodness and kindness, which He bestows upon us. Even when we feel we are lacking, we are comforted that Hashem, who is all-powerful and all-capable, can fill our needs instantly, if that is what is truly best for us.2

Fortunate are those who can say and feel “ככה לו” – the way it is now is the absolute best it can be for my eternal good. Hashem knows exactly what I need for my growth and development. One who can internalize this is truly fortunate, because Hashem is his G-d. He feels personally guided by Hashem and is confident that his life circumstances are directly orchestrated by Hashem for his ultimate benefit.3 

1 רוקח חלק א:קל"ט

2 מצודת דוד תהלים קמ״ד:ט"ו, של"ה הקדוש תהלים קמ״ד:ט"ו

3 ספר נפשי חולת אהבתך, מיוסד ע"פ דובר צדק מהרה״ק ר' צדוק הכהן מלובלין