I hope everyone had a wonderful Mother’s Day. Today, I want to highlight a woman and a mother from 1 Samuel. This woman desired a child so much and yet she was barren. The other wife of her husband would mock her and provoke her because of this and the fact that she had given their husband children. This woman was called Hannah, which means “grace”, which seems an appropriate choice.
For years, Hannah had struggled with being unable to bear children. I imagine it would have been easy to lose hope and faith. While she struggled with the mockery and harassment of the other wife, Peninnah, she remained faithful to God. During this time, she grieved and wouldn’t eat, which distressed her husband, Elkanah, a lot, because he loved her so much, even though she couldn’t bear children.
Finally, she went to the temple, where Eli was the priest on duty and prayed. “She was deeply distressed and prayed to the Lord, and wept bitterly.” – 1 Samuel 1:10. After years and years of torment from Peninnah and the inability to bear children, she went to the temple and wept. She went looking for healing and a solution. During this heartfelt prayer, she vowed to God that she would dedicate her son to Him and would never let a razor touch his head.
She was praying so deeply and so fervently, with her lips moving but no words coming out, that Eli thought she was drunk. Eli confronted her about her drinking and she responds: “I am a woman troubled in spirit. I have drunk neither wine nor strong drink, but I have been pouring out my soul before the Lord.” – 1 Samuel 1:15.
Imagine for a minute that this is you and your biggest problem. Do you “pour your soul out before the Lord” or do you seek other solutions first? I used to have a tendency to turn to family and friends first and then God, but I have learned that it is so much to start with Him. He never steers me wrong but sometimes people do.
Back to Hannah – she explains the situation to Eli and he blesses her. Not too long after, “the Lord remembered her.” (1 Sam 1:19). She gave birth to a son and named him Samuel. When he was old enough, she took him to Eli at the temple and dedicated him to the Lord.
I am not sure what I would do in that situation. Imagine praying for years for something and getting it and then having to give it up. I don’t know if I could do that; it would be so hard and go against my normal selfish tendencies, especially if it was your only child. It makes me think of Abraham and Isaac and the faith it takes to be willing to sacrifice your child. Do you have that kind of faith? Do you have the faith required to give your only child to the Lord? Hannah did and she praised the Lord for it. She praised him in what my Bible titled “Hannah’s Prayer” or what my study Bible calls “Hannah’s Song”. She praised him for all that He does.
“He will guard the feet of his faithful ones.” – 1 Samuel 2:9
No matter what happens, God guards our steps and is with us. Hannah demonstrates what it means to remain faithful. Yes, she experienced hard times, was bullied and grieved for her circumstances but throughout it all she maintained a deep faith that the Lord would provide. She took her worries to the cross and left them there. As it was His will, God answered her prayer.
I urge you to look to Hannah as an example. Whatever is worrying you or troubling you, take it to the cross and trust in His answer. Our God is a mighty and amazing God! As always, we love hearing from you.