I’ve been doing a lot of reading and reflecting this week on the heart of Hannah. It came about because of some challenging conversations I had and then a devotion book I was given by a former parent. It means more to me than you know, Stachia! Really, though, I know it came about because of God and His timing.
Hannah awes me. Truly, it is the heart of Hannah that awes me. There is so much in Hannah’s heart! There is so much more than meets the eye in Hannah’s life and story. Her story is more than a baby story. It’s story of life with a baby mixed in. Her story is about her heart in all things. There are applications for so many of our challenges in life. We are blessed to see glimpses of this in the first two chapters of 1 Samuel. This is what I see in Hannah’s heart.
Hannah trusted. We all know that Hannah had a desire for a son – and yet it says “the LORD had closed her womb” (1 Samuel 1:6). We don’t know why. There is no explanation given. Yet who are we to question God? There are many times when we don’t understand God’s design in our lives, but as His faith-filled people, we can be confident that God is the designer of our lives. We don’t have to understand to have faith. Hannah had faith. Do I have that same faith when I don’t understand God’s designs?
Hannah prayed. Her heart led her to pray to God because she knew only He could grant her the desires of her heart. So Hannah prayed. She begged. She implored. Verse 10 says, “She was deeply distressed and prayed to the LORD and wept bitterly.” Do I seek God that earnestly and openly, with all the emotion that is in my heart?
Hannah waited. 1 Samuel 1:7 says, “So it went on year by year.” Hannah waited patiently and faithfully for the Lord’s answer year after year. When she finally did receive an answer, still Hannah waited. God gave her a promise but no timeline. As soon as Hannah received the promise she would have a son, she gave thanks and “went her way” (verse 18). She left the time in God’s hands. Can I let go of all my desires for a timed plan?
Hannah rejoiced. When her son Samuel was born, and even before in her life and pregnancy, Hannah rejoiced in God’s goodness. God had heard her prayers and God had answered her prayers. The joy in Hannah’s life is most clearly evident in reading Hannah’s prayer in chapter 2. “And Hannah prayed and said, “My heart exults in the LORD; my strength is exalted in the LORD…There is none holy like the LORD; there is none besides you; there is no rock like our God” (2:1a, 2). Do I daily give evidence of the joy that results from God’s goodness in my life?
Hannah gave. One of the things that awes me the most is the fact that Hannah willingly gave her son, whom she had long desired, to the Lord. She did so by living away from her toddler child so he could be raised in the service of the Lord. Hannah gave because the Lord gave. Am I giving – willing and freely – of all the Lord has given me?
I am awed. I am awed by Hannah and her heart that belonged to God. She gave her life and her heart and her son to the Lord. What a faith example for me!
Thank you, Lord, for showing me the heart of Hannah. May my heart reflect you, just as Hannah’s did, through all the days of my life.