These past few weeks have been a rollercoaster ride for me! First Gideon becomes a POWERHOUSE FOR GOD, and then Samson with his undisciplined life, still ending with God's mercy and grace to him. Now we get the chance to take a deep breath and tune into the story of a mother's empty arms. Hannah mourns her barreness, made even harder by the fact that the other woman, in her husband's life, Peninah, was able to have many children. She never stopped gloating about her children to Hannah.
Her husband, Elkanah, tried to comfort her asking,"Don't I mean more to you than 10 sons?" There's no way a guy can understand a mother's empty arms yearning for a child to embrace.
I relate to Hannah, because it took me so long to have my first child and I remember telling Alan, "My arms are hungry for a baby! And then the joy and thrill after four years of marriage of finally holding my first born in my arms!
It really kind of made me angry with Eli for seeing Hannah in the temple crying out silently to God with tears streaming down her cheeks, thinking that she was drunk. But when he understood, he prayed with her for the answer to her cry. It says in the word that she went home and her face was no longer sad.
I hope all us remember those times when we have heavy burdens on our hearts and as we cry out to God, all of a sudden out of nowhere comes the peace that passes understanding and His joy and peace floods our hearts in the midst of the storm. Have you felt this same way? I'd like to know.
Then when she finally had that little baby she prayed for, my heart hurt for her that she had promised him to the Lord's service and had to give him up. But what an incredible woman to be able to fulfill her vow to God and take him back to Eli. I love the thought that Hannah "lent" him to the Lord. The Hebrew word for lent means a complete giving up of the child to God.
I love the song of praise that Hannah sang to the Lord. She began her prayer by rejoicing in the Lord for having been given a child. The second phrase of the song says "My horn is exalted". Used figuratively a horn represents power and strength. It means with head high, conscious of strength. In her song she talks about the Rock which speaks of His eternality, stability and reliability.
In the last phrase it says, "He will give strength to his king and exalt the horn of His annointed". The Hebrew word for annointed means "Messiah". This phrase points to the ultimate King before whom every knee shall bow! Hannah felt God granting her a child was another step in His promise to the mothers of Israel that He would one day provide through them the Messiah!
I'm so glad that God did not leave Hannah without a child! She had three more sons and two daughters. That's just like our PaPa God who we can trust with our lives! He is reliable!
As I read her song of praise
Her beautful prayer