Torah Thinkers Forum

Chanukkah Prayers

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Yesterday morning on Shabbat, the day before Chanukkah, when the davening in shul was almost completed I noticed an old man enter and look around. I surmised by the kippah perched precariously on his head that he was not used to attending services and that there was a special reason he was coming now,

He slowly walked up to a man standing near me, and I heard him ask in Hebrew "My wife is in the hospital. What prayer can l say to ask for her recovery?"  The person who was asked the question was a little flustered and started to look at the index in the siddur to see what prayer he could find. I walked over to the old man and showed him the "Misheberaich" prayer that is commonly said after the Torah reading for all those who are sick, and told him to mention his wife's name at the appropriate place in the prayer.

While he said the prayer, I walked to the back of the shul and returned with a small book that I presented to the old man. I told him that this book is Tehillim (Psalms) that was written (mainly) by King David thousands of years ago. Through the centuries, Jewish people recite Tehillim whenever they are in need of salvation. I told him to take the Tehillim home and recite a few of them every day in the merit of his wife. I said that when his wife hopefully gets better, he can return the Tehillim to the shul.

He thanked me, and I wished his wife a Refuah Shleima (a complete recovery).

Chanukkah is a holiday that is observed in the cold days of winter. It takes place at the end of the month (25th of Kislev) when the moon is waning, and the hours of daylight are short, while darkness fills most of the 24 hours of the day. But during this darkness, a small flame is lit that lightens the night and foretells a change, that daylight will soon overpower darkness, that good will overpower evil, and that hope will prevail over gloom.

 

One lesson of Chanukkah is that one must always believe that we should never despair. I hope and pray that this old man may one day soon celebrate with his wife at home, and that Chanukkah will again be a joyous occasion for them both.

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COM_EASYBLOG_GUEST Saturday, 21 October 2017
Last updated on: 10/21/2017
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