To get on with the story, we had been suffering from a terrible drought. So the people came to me and said, "Pray that rain may fall" (Mishnah, Ta'anit 3:8). I was quite sure that I could bring plenty of rain, so I prayed for rain. Do you know what happened? Nothing! Can you imagine it? All the people were standing around looking at me, expecting a miracle.
Well, I knew that I had to show God just how serious I was. I drew a big circle and stood within it. I said to God: "O Lord of the world, your children have asked me for help because they know that I am like a son in your household. I swear by Your great Name that I will not move from inside the circle until you have pity on your children."