Still no rain. Not enough rain. Everybody was talking about
Elisheva's father, who grew sunflowers, declared that at this
by the end of the month, his whole crop would be ruined. Not
The four children were sitting on Elisheva Reiner's porch one
afternoon when, suddenly, Miriam declared, "I can bounce a
five hundred times without stopping."
Not to be outdone, nine-year-old Shmuly declared, "I can
on my head for five whole minutes without falling."
Seven-year-old Shira announced, "Well, I can turn round and
one hundred times without falling over."
Elisheva thought feverishly. What was she good at? Nothing.
at all to impress her friend and two younger siblings. "I can
make it rain," she blurted out. The other three were silent
a moment. "You can't!" shouted her friend and Shmuly, her
brother who was only one year younger, simultaneously, "You
"Yes I can!" insisted Elisheva. What was the matter with her?
It was as if her tongue had a mind of its own.
"Well, prove it!" taunted Shmuli. "We could use some more
rain. How do you make it rain?"
"If you daven for something hard enough and long
just for that one thing, Hashem makes it happen." Once again,
the others were silent for a moment until Elisheva continued.
weeks ago, I was left in charge in the evening while Abba and
went out. All the children were in bed, even you, Shmuli, and
a bit scared. So I davened really hard and they came
"Ha! They would have come home, anyway," replied Miriam.
"No, but this was different," said Elisheva. "Their meeting
was canceled for some reason and they came home at once."
"That was just a coincidence," argued her friend.
"When I knew that Ima was getting a baby, I davened
it should be a boy, and two weeks later it was a
"It was going to be a boy, anyway. It takes nine months for a
baby to come, not two weeks."
"All right, then, here's something else. For a whole year I
a particular kind of new schoolbag and Ima said mine was
good. Then she bought it for my birthday, anyway. You saw it,
"So what? Ima knew you wanted it and she wanted to make you
I heard her talking about it to Abba," interrupted Shmuli.
"But the whole point is that I davened for it every
and then I got it," said Elisheva decisively.
"All right," decided Miriam. "We'll give you a week. If
you can make it rain within seven days, then you are telling
But we all know that only Hashem Himself can make it
"Of course. But our prayers can make Him want to make it
retorted Elisheva, getting her last word in before Miriam
The next day at school, Miriam told all the girls that
she was a magician. She had said she could make it rain.
was dismayed. Why had she said it?
That night before she went to bed, she asked her mother,
isn't it true that when someone davens hard enough,
"Yes, of course, He listens to us, Ellie. He always listens
us. But we don't always get the answer we think we will get.
we ask for is not always what is best for us, anyway."
Elisheva went to sleep. The next morning, she scrutinized the
Never before had she noticed how very blue it was. Visitors
l'aretz always said the sky was bluer in Eretz Yisroel.
not a cloud in sight. Actually, a beautiful blue. But at this
Elisheva wished for a grey sky.
At school, she davened as she had never before. And
day. And the day after that. In fact, her teacher called her
her for her total concentration. But still no rain. And the
needed rain. And Elisheva had said she could bring the
"Well, Elisheva," called one of her classmates on the fourth
day. "How are the magic spells?"
"Any progress? You only have another three days left."
hung her head. There was nothing she could say.
Then it was Thursday. Followed by Friday. It was cold, but
remained a deep blue. Elisheva decided that she was not going
to school on Sunday. She couldn't face the jeers. Nor even
of her true friends.
Friday night after dinner, Elisheva went straight to bed. She
her head with the quilt and sobbed. Silently, she mouthed,
horuach umorid hagoshem" over and over again.
About two hours later, she was awoken by a loud clap of
sat up straight in bed. There it was again. And then she
the unmistakable sound of water pouring down from the
stopping to think, she jumped out of bed and knocked at her
bedroom door. "Who is it?" called Abba.
"It's raining!" Elisheva almost shouted the words. Abba came
to the door. "Does the thunder frighten you, sweetie?" No,
but Abba, it's raining!"
"Yes, I can hear it. And perhaps you were right to wake us up
with such important news. We can wash our hands and say a
over the lightning and thunder. But then you must go back to
On Sunday morning, when it was still raining, some of the
at Elisheva with a new kind of respect. As for Elisheva,
she davened with great concentration that morning,
davened with gratitude to Hashem for the rain, and for
saved her face.
she decided that boasting was just not her line...