Baal HaSulam, “Introduction to the Study of the Ten Sefirot,” item 98: Now you can see that the question the interpreters asked about the Mitzva of love, saying that this Mitzva is out of our hands, since love does not come by coercion and compulsion, is not at all a question. This is because it is entirely in our hands. Every person can labor in the Torah until he finds the attainment of His open Providence, as it is written, “I labored and found, believe.”
When one attains open Providence, the love extends to him by itself through the natural channels. And one who does not believe that he can attain through his efforts, for whatever reason, is necessarily in disbelief of the words of our sages. Instead, he imagines that the labor is not sufficient for each person, which is the opposite of the verse, “I labored and did not find, do not believe.” It is also against the words, “those that seek Me shall find Me”; specifically, those that “seek,” whoever they are, great or small. However, he certainly needs to labor.
It is because exertion is the “vessel.” It isn’t just a prerequisite like in our world, when I can borrow from the bank or steal if I don’t have money to buy something. In attaining spirituality I have no choice, the money has to be mine! This is my “covering” (Kisufa, from the same Hebrew root as money) over the desire to receive, the Masach (screen). It has to be mine, since otherwise, I won’t be able to feel the filling.
We can “borrow” from the Creator and then repay Him by our exertion, as it says: “The store is open and the hand is writing.” But I can only borrow as help for my development and not for the revelation. In order to attain revelation, I must have my own vessel.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 12/20/12, “The Introduction to the Study of the Ten Sefirot”