“So Hannah rose up after they had eaten in Shiloh, and after they had drunk. Now Eli the priest sat upon a seat by a post of the temple of the LORD. And she was in bitterness of soul, and prayed unto the LORD, and wept sore.” I Samuel 1:9-10
In bitterness of soul, she wept and cried before the Lord. “Lord, I have waited so long for a child. Would you please look on my affliction and hear my cry today? Grant the desire of my heart and give me a little boy. I will give him to you to serve you.” This prayer came from the very depths of her heart.
Eli watched as Hannah knelt. Her lips moved but he could not hear the words she was saying. He thought she must be drunk and rose from his seat to rebuke her.
But she looked up into his face and told him that she was a woman of sorrowful spirit and had drunk neither wine nor strong drink. She had poured out her heart to the Lord, out of an abundance of grief and sorrow.
Eli realized that she was asking something special from the Lord, and he spoke peace to her, saying that the God of Israel would grant her petition. Hannah rose in peace, believing the promise, and went back to her family to eat. Joy replaced the sorrow in her heart.
Can we learn a lesson from Hannah? No matter what our problems are, no matter what we are going through, the answer is always to take it to the Lord in prayer. God knows exactly what we are facing, but He waits for us to seek Him for an answer. As we pray, we feel His presence surround us, and know that He has heard our cry and that the answer is on the way. We praise Him for what He is going to do and go on our way, believing and trusting.
Prayers need not be heard to be answered. God knows the very thoughts that we have in our hearts and when we cry out from the depths of our being, He hears.
I John 5:14-15 “And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us: And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him.
Hannah rose from her knees that day with a new hope and purpose in her heart. She knew that God had heard her prayer and that in time she would bear the son she desired. Her adversary had no more power over her because she had taken her burden to the Lord and now, she had something great to look forward to.
Prayer: Jesus, may we always realize that bringing our cares and our problems to you is the only way to go. You understand and will give us the answer that we need.
Devotion by Anne Johnston