Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Hannah-- A Virtuous Woman

It seems that a common theme in the Bible is faithful women who couldn't have children. In those days, having children was extremely important. You don't have to look hard to find numerous places where God says that children are a blessing and a gift. So these women who struggled to have children were devastated. Hannah was one such woman. She is a woman whose faith should be an example to us all.

Hannah was deeply loved by her husband

Despite the fact that she couldn't give him the children they desired, it is clear that Elkanah deeply loves his wife. In those days, when there was much less focus on romantic love and marriage was more for posterity, Hannah must have been a very special wife. 

Her husband has full confidence in her and lacks nothing of value. -Proverbs 31:11

Hannah kept her focus on the Lord

Hannah knew that no one could heal her except God. She doesn't lash out at her husband or Peninnah, who treated her so cruelly. Instead of blaming God, she turns to Him. She pours out her heart to Him. And when Samuel is finally born, Hannah says, "Because I asked the Lord for him." She never stops remembering that it is God who brings all blessings. 

She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue. -Proverbs 31:26

Hannah kept her promises

How often is it that you utter a prayer asking God something and then, when you receive that thing, you don't even stop to thank God? Maybe it's just me, but I find myself doing that often and I have made a mental note to always remember to thank God when things I had prayed for happen! Hannah was a woman who remembered to thank God-- and not just that, she acted on probably one of the most difficult promises she could have made-- giving up her longed-for son. How easy would it have been for Hannah to keep Samuel? At that time there was a lot of corruption in the priesthood so it would have been easy for Hannah to justify keeping Samuel. After all, who would really expect Hannah to give up her beloved son? But she doesn't make excuses-- she keeps her word. 

If you want to read more about Hannah's lovely heart, you can read her beautiful prayer in 1 Samuel 2:1-10. Her heart for the Lord is indeed a wonderful example for us!

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