Baal HaSulam, Letter #16: “…prior to making a Mitzva [commandment], one must not consider private Providence at all. On the contrary, one should say, ‘If I am not for me, who is for me?’”
A Mitzva is the correction of a person’s desire since in the state he is in, he is detached from the Creator.
He wants to connect this state to the Creator as the one upper force, “There is none else besides Him,” “the good and the benevolent.” Thus, he restores this state to the state he was in before the shattering.
This is how he collects these states time after time, as it is written, “until many pennies accumulate into a great sum,” and he completes the correction of his soul.
We were given 613 corrupt desires to begin with, which we try to restore to adhesion. Before we perform a Mitzva—when I understand that I am in a corrupt state because I am not in adhesion, in unity, with the upper force—I mustn’t think about private providence, but, instead, we should say, “If I am not for me, who is for me?”
…But after the fact, a person must reconsider and believe that it was not by “My power and the might of my hand” that I made the Mitzva, …
This means that I perform a Mitzva, that I exert myself as much as I can and use all the means—the Rav, the group, the study, dissemination, everything—in order to please the Creator and to tie myself to “There is none else besides Him.” At the same time, I take into account only “If I am not for me, who is for me,” and that I must take all these actions by myself.
However, having succeeded in something, I must say that this success was predetermined and ready, and that the Creator has prepared this for me in advance. If I am adhered to “If I am not for me, who is for me,” and eventually to, “There is none else besides Him,” it is the complete means to reach adhesion.
From the 1st> part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 5/15/14, Writings of Baal HaSulam