=96= Words of Melancholy: Turn

The Hasidic Tales includes the story of Dovin Din of Jerusalem who was approached by a man suffering a crisis of belief. Whatever reply Reb Dovid attempted, the man dismissed. So Reb Dovid restrained himself and simply listened to the man’s rant and rave. For hours he listened. Finally, he said,’Why are you so angry with God?’

This question stunned the man, as he had said nothing at all about God. He grew very quiet and looked at Dovid Din and said: ‘All my life I have been so afraid to express my anger to God that I have always directed my anger at people who are connected with God. But until this moment I did not understand this’

Then Reb Dovid stood up and told the man to follow him. He led him to the Wailing wall, away from the place where people pray, to the site of the ruins of the Temple. When they reached that place, Reb Dovid told him that it was time to express all the anger he felt towards God. Then, for more than an hour, the man struck the wall of the Kotel with his hands and screamed his heart out. After that he began to cry and could not stop crying, and little by little his cries became sobs that turned into prayers. And that is how Reb Dovid Din taught him how to pray

Prayer by Philip Yancey

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