One of my favorite stories in the Bible is the story of Hannah.
Most people know her story but don’t always remember her – they remember
instead her better known first-born son. Hannah longed for a sign of God’s
acceptance. Specifically, Hannah longed to have a child, the most visible and
commonly recognized sign of God’s blessing.
Her husband assured her that child or no child, she was
loved. But Hannah longed for that day when others would know she was
So whenever her husband would make his sacrifices and
offerings, Hannah would go along and pray. Year after year, she pleaded
with God. She begged God. She wept and she fasted. There were times when
she no longer had words, but kept on praying anyway.
Eventually, God answered her prayers. She gave birth to
a son – and then three more sons as well as two daughters.
I love her story because of her persistence. I love her
story because of God’s faithfulness. But whenever I read it I’m also
amazed at – and challenged by – her response to God’s answered prayer.
Rather than simply giving thanks for the child that she agonized over,
Hannah takes the child and gives him to Eli, the priest, so he can raise
him as an adopted son.
In Paul’s words, she “groaned inwardly” as she waited
and then when her prayers were answered, she gave away the “firstfruits”
of her womb! (Rom 8:23).... DPS Subscribers:
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