One of the days, I picked up my bible to read on the sons of Eli in the book of Samuel. Before I continue, let me just squeeze in here that I really believe the sort of demons us preachers kids have the tendency of fellowshipping with are very different aye! Eli’s sons were just something else my goodness! Anyway, so by mistake and I want to be honest here, by mistake, I went too far behind and happened to see the story of Hannah and said to myself to just read it. After all I hadn’t really been mindful of her story. Boy am I pleased I did. There is no irrelevant part in the Bible oo, no ‘blessless’ story. I mean I was so excited about the story of Hannah. I know right Hannah! Not Ruth, not Esther, not my sweetheart ‘Tikvah’, not Eve but Hannah hehe so yah, I’m going to be sharing a little something something I got from her story which is found in 1 Samuel 1.
I put myself in her shoes so I could really see how far from the kingdom I am. See how much growing and learning I needed to do. So the first thing I noticed about Hannah was that she was a faithful woman. Year after year even when the Lord had shut up her womb, she still went with her husband to worship and to sacrifice unto God. First point struck me, would I have still gone seeing as my desires weren’t met? The answer is No! I wouldn’t have even bothered, ok maybe I’d make the trip because trips are always a yes from me but to go to the temple to worship? No please. He can’t hear me or well He doesn’t mind me if He can so why bother?
The scary thing about this is that God couldn’t trust me like He did with Job because clearly I’m serving Him for the things I get. Coming to that realization really broke my heart but to be honest if I went a couple of times with no answer, I’d have stopped going. Even now, when I make some requests to the Lord and He’s silent, I stop going to Church whole heartedly. My body is physically present but my heart and mind are far from the place. So this was very impressive to me, that she still went with her husband year after year. She was persistent in her prayer. She must have known that the desires of the righteous are only good (Proverbs 11:23). I’m saying this because if you are not praying according to the will of God, if you aren’t praying in the position of a righteous man, please no matter how persistent you are in prayer, God is not going to give you a desire He didn’t plant within you Himself. Nothing ascends to heaven but that which came down from Heaven. No desire that isn’t born of God returns to Him.
So there was also the fact that she remained faithful to God even in His season of silence. The next thing that I asked myself was, why was God silent on her? He knew He’d grant her the child so why the wait? Why make her weep and starve herself all those times? Firstly, it brought me to this thing my dad says ‘su gye’, which translates to ‘cry to receive’. You know the thing us women master in hehe If at first we don’t succeed, we try again but with tears this time. It’s a manipulative tactic that we’ve adopted and use on our partners, fathers and friends to have our way. Well, ‘Su gye’ doesn’t work on God. If it’s not in His plan for your life, you can’t force His hand with your tears. Imagine God moved every time we cried. No really imagine it? Imagine how ruined we’d be by now. I imagined it and all I can say is I really thank God that He is God and He cannot be manipulated.
Next thing I heard in my Spirit was idol worship. Hannah would have made an idol of the child. I know I would have. God was looking at her heart and He knew that her motive for wanting the child was probably flawed. He also knew that sometimes we desire a thing so much that we make idols of It. We exalt it so high that God loses His place and like my pastor would say, God is not shy, He said it right in His word that He’s a jealous God and He would not give up His place to anyone or anything. She wanted a child to satisfy herself. There was no pointing to God in it. God wasn’t about to satisfy the desire of her flesh and lose His place in doing so. Aside : I need to bring back or rewrite on idol worshipping and then make another post on jealousy as a virtue!
Right there, I understood why God resisted me in some things and denied me of some things. I would have made idols of them. No, don’t get me wrong, I’m not out of the woods yet at all. I still have ‘fights’ with God over things I know won’t bring Him glory, things He knows I would worship. Reading on Hannah really made my heart smite me because I have been angry about things that God was protecting me from.
Jackie hill Perry said something that really spoke to me. she said “A lot of times we are praying for things that we have no intention of giving back to God in the first place.”
So many times we are praying for things that weren’t birthed from Him, that serve Him no purpose, that brings Him no Glory. I’m sure someone reading this is like me saying ‘should every little thing of my life be about God?’ Um yes love! It says in one of my new favourite scriptures; Romans 11:36
For of Him, (birthed by Him) and through Him, (His provision) and to Him, (serves His purpose ) are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen
As a believer, if it’s not for His glory, you should want no part in it. This is an another area I struggle with. Sometimes i want something that is seemingly good but the reason for which i want it makes all the difference. We pray for things that we are unwilling to surrender back to Lord if He asked us to. There should be nothing in our lives so exalted that we can’t surrender to the Lord; that we can’t give up and walk away from if He asked us to. God doesn’t ask for much, if you ask me and I know the Holy Spirit would remind me of this day one day when I’m whining but He doesn’t ask for much, He just wants to be First in your life. He will fight against anything that threatens to take His place.
“There should be nothing in your life so exalted that you can’t surrender to the Lord”
Now we see in verse 11 that her heart had changed. Did she still want the child? Absolutely but she had finally come to the point where she wanted him for His glory. She said Father give me a son and I will give him back to you. I’m sure God was like ‘Aha now let’s talk properly’. Now you are speaking my language. I wasn’t going to give you a child simply to fulfil society’s checklist , not so you could parade them around like they are some prize you won in a contest, not to cover your insecurities, not to prove anything to anyone but for MY Glory. The moment she brought into submission her desires and relinquished it for the Will of God to prevail, the heavens kissed her earth and her prayers were answered. She knew they had been answered, in the verse 18, it says she ate and her countenance was no more sad.
The moment she brought into submission her desires and relinquished it for the Will of God to prevail, the heavens kissed her earth and her prayers were answered.
When I continued reading the story and reached the verse 22, I saw that she said ‘I will not go up…’ I know the story too well but I still screamed yessss! We all get sad and frustrated and make some promises, God should understand we didn’t mean it or? The Holy Spirit erh, He has zero chill, I don’t even get it hehe so I was just reminded of a day I was so sick I had thrown myself unto the floor and in tears I cried out to God and made a whole list of promises. I just wanted to sleep that one day so I went on and on. “Father let me sleep without pain even if it’s for an hour or two I will do this, I’d stop this, I’d let go of this…” oh darlings, when I was able to sleep and woke up, I had forgotten everything I had said. Ah? But God should understand that sometimes in our pain we make outbursts that we don’t plan to keep and He knows we don’t so that’s okay right? I really truly thought so even in this Hannah story, I thought if she didn’t give Samuel back it was okay.
So when I read the first part that said ‘I will not go’ even though I knew that’s not what she was saying and the sentence hadn’t even ended, I shouted ‘that’s my girl!’ Because truly, I wouldn’t have given my baby back. Hannah was a really strong woman. I honestly cannot imagine carrying the baby inside of me, giving birth, bonding with him while I fed him and then handing him over to Eli. Look at Hannah though, she said “I will not go up until the child be weaned, and then I will bring him, that he may appear before the LORD, and there abide for ever.”
Before I conclude, let me just make mention of the verse 8 where her husband asked her ‘am I not better to thee than 10 sons?’ That statement made me very uncomfortable because God has been asking me that. “Am I not enough? Am I not better than what you are asking for? Are you not content in Me alone? “ Sometimes we chase after things He gives more than we chase after Him. Sometimes we are so blinded to the blessings we do have in our lives, that we go chasing the ones we think we don’t. Some times we lose sight of what’s right in front of us looking for ‘more’… MERCY! God should be enough because HE IS enough. is He not better than the things we seek?, the things HE gives?
Beloved how many of us can really say to ourselves that we honour/will honour the things we’ve said to God long after the feeling leaves or long after He’s granted us what we ask for ? How many of us are persistent in our prayers like Hannah was, how many of us ask why God is making us wait ? What is He doing? What am I doing? How many of us believers do things for His Glory and His Glory alone? How many of us are willing to give back to God the very things He’s given us.
This short story revealed me in ways I didn’t imagine and it’s taught me things that would stay with me forever as I stay meditating on it. I hope it blessed you like it did me and I urge you to read on it when you can and please share what you learnt from it as well with me as well, in the comment section, on social media, wherever. I would love to hear from you. Until next time, Stay blessed.