Imrei Emet: Shabbat Prayers: “Likrat Shabbat”
“To welcome the Sabbath, come let us go,
For it is the source of blessing;
beginning, from antiquity she was honored,
Last in deed, but first in thought.
Come, my beloved, to greet the bride–the Sabbath presents, let us welcome!”
The phrase, “For it is the source of blessing,” is usually understood as referring to the Sabbath. However, we can read this phrase as referring to the one just before, “To welcome the Sabbath, let us go.”
The main idea is the preparation for the Sabbath. When the prayer describes, “the source of blessing,” it is referring to our Shabbat preparations as the source of blessing!
This is consistent with the Talmud (Avodah Zarah 3a) that teaches, “Only one who toiled before Shabbat will be able to eat on the Sabbath,” referring not only to the Sabbath day, but to our eternal lives in the World to Come. Imrei Emet