Shortly before the onset of Shabbos, the Holy AriZal escorted his students to the outskirts of the city of Tzfas to greet the Shabbos Queen. While they were chanting their holy melodies, the AriZal asked his students: “My dear friends, would you like to spend Shabbos in Jerusalem?” Rather than jumping at the chance to accompany their saintly teacher on a holy mission, they hesitated, citing the Talmudic expression, “Let us go and consult our wives.”

At this lack of enthusiasm and excitement, the AriZal became very shaken, clapped his hands together and said: “Woe onto us that we missed an opportunity to be redeemed from exile. If all of you would have unanimously embraced my invitation to travel immediately to Jerusalem with joy, we would have had the merit to greet Mashiach — and immediately all the Jewish people would have been redeemed. For now was a perfect moment for redemption. And since you have refused, we are back to where we were.”

Toras Menachem 5718, vol. 2, p. 291, Parshas Shemini