(This article is dedicated to Menucha, a young girl who often cries, "Why, isn't Moshiach coming? How much longer can we wait? The pain is too great!")

Yes, darling, life is often very painful. Endless wars. Family conflicts. Physical and emotional illnesses. From early in life, we are told, "We don't hurt the people we love." So when we feel hurt, it is difficult to trust that the hurts G‑d inflicts are out of love. Why would He hurt us if He loves us? From an ego-centric perspective, it doesn't make sense.

But from a soul perspective, it is all perfect. In order to make G‑d a reality down in this lowly world, we need endless conflicts and challenges because they give us opportunities to strengthen our spiritual resources and create a relationship with G‑d. For example:

A: ACCEPTANCE: We don't choose what happens to us. All we can do is trust that G‑d knows which losses we must experience in order to create a bond with Him.

B: BENEFIT OF THE DOUBT: Unless we are dealing with an evil person, we can assume that the people who hurt us are not doing so out of any evil intention to harm, but are simply tired, forgetful, unaware or overwhelmed with other matters.

C: COURAGE: We can manifest courage by "doing the difficult" – especially difficult acts of kindness and fighting for justice.

D: DISCIPLINE: At any moment, we can do some act of self-control (especially in what we say, eat, buy, etc.).

E: EMPATHY: We can have mercy for people's pain – and our own as well.

F: FAITH: We can trust that the painful events G‑d gives us are given out of love, because we bring holy light to the world when we improve our character traits.

G: GRATITUDE: We can focus intensely on being grateful for all we have.

H: HUMILITY: We can realize that we can never have all the answers and that we are all imperfect and limited.

I: INTEGRITY: We can do the right thing, despite the temptations we all face.

J: JOY: We can make joy our true spiritual goal.

K: KINDNESS: There are endless kindnesses which can do throughout the day.

L: LOVE: We show love by being interested in others' thoughts and feelings and accepting them as they are, without criticizing or trying to change them.

M: MASTERY: At every moment of the day, we can master our harmful impulses.

N: NOBILITY: We can remember that we are children of the King – and act that way even if those around us are not doing so.

O: OBEDIENCE: We can be obedient to His will, even when we want to rebel.

P: PATIENCE: We can be patient with ourselves and the people around us.

Q: QUESTION: We can question the beliefs that make us miserable, like the belief, "The world should not be like this," or "People should be more loving toward me."

R: RESOURCEFULNESS: We can seek solutions instead of complaining about the fact that problems exist.

S: SILENCE: We can be silent if we know that our words will hurt.

T: TEFILLAH (PRAYER): We can pray for the strength to bring G‑d's Light to this world.

U: UNDERSTANDING: We can take the time to listen and try to understand others.

V: VOLUNTEER: We can do acts of kindness–and get that special "helpers' high."

W: WISDOM: We can increase our wisdom by studying Torah.

X: "X" IT OUT: We can distance ourselves from the people and substances which are harmful to our growth.

Y: YEARN: We can yearn to do G‑d's will instead of focusing on petty matters.

Z: ZEST: We can develop a zest for life, appreciating all the endless opportunities we are given each day to draw closer to G‑d.

We are told that when Moshiach comes, we will not have the opportunity to do any of these acts, except for learning Torah, as there will be an open revelation of G‑d, and therefore, there will be no illness, no poverty, no jealousy or sorrow. It will be obvious that learning Torah is the only thing that will give us true pleasure. Nevertheless, we can get a taste of Moshiach by practicing all of the above throughout the day!