Shmitah is a unique mitzvah, which bears an astounding reward. Once every seven years, we are commanded not to work the land. In return, Hashem gives us His guarantee: “Vetzivisi es birchosi.” I will send My blessing!
Is this incredible bracha exclusive to farmers? Is there any way that we can merit receiving this blessing as well?
In a recent conversation, Rav Chaim Kanievsky addressed the questions unequivocally. Yes, the Gaon Hador proclaimed, there is a way for any Yid to reap the benefits of this bracha. How? By becoming one of the Tomchei Shviis and partnering with the brave farmers. When one signs a partnership with Keren Hashviis, he is purchasing a share in the mitzvah of Shmitah while supporting the farmers, which grants him a portion in the blessing.
Keren Hashviis offers donors the incredible opportunity to sign a “Shtar Shutfus” with farmers. Through this contract, which is both legally and halachically binding, the donor becomes an actual partner in a farmer’s land for the year of Shmitah, which deems him a genuine Shmitah-observant landowner and grants him all the inherent brachos.
Rav Chaim unequivocally stated that when one donates to Keren Hashviis and creates such a partnership, he will merit the bracha of “Vetzivisi es birchasi”. Furthermore, Rav Chaim clearly stated that the more land one partners in, the greater his merit and the larger share of the bracha he will receive.
Keren Hashviis offers a number of levels of partnerships, with larger donations granting donors ownership in larger parcels of land. Rav Chaim’s ruling was that the larger the portion one purchases, the more bracha he will receive.
Keren Hashviis is the only organization that directly supports the farmers, thereby making it possible for Shmitah to be properly observed on the highest level. Because their work is so vital to each Shmitah-observant farmer, Rav Chaim ruled that one may use ma’aser money to support the cause. Additionally, he stated that because Shmitah is considered a “mitzvah b’shaitoh,” a pressing, timebound mitzvah that demands our attention at the present time, supporting Keren Hashviis takes precedence over other important tzedakos.
“It is a mitzvah gedolah,” Rav Kanievsky declared.
He concluded with the most coveted of all guarantees by saying, “[Those who partner with farmers] will merit Gan Eden.” The eternal reward awaits all those who take advantage of this once-every-seven-year opportunity