Tuesday 12 January 2010

Bible Book:
1 Samuel

"Go in peace; the God of Israel grant the petition you have made to him." (v.17)

1 Samuel 1:9-20 Tuesday 12 January 2010


Elkanah's family was away at Shiloh on their annual trip toworship and sacrifice to God. There had been a good meal withplenty to eat and drink but Hannah was deeply sad - without anychildren of her own she seems to have been unable to eat. We seethis picture of her praying fervently, and almost bargaining withGod. If she has a son, she will dedicate him to God.

With the understanding that it was God's doing that left herchildless, she must appeal to God - and she was weeping while shewas praying.

Her husband, Elkanah, doesn't seem to understand her feelings, andnow the priest at Shiloh, Eli, also doesn't understand what isgoing on. He assumes that she is drunk - after all there has beenfeasting and drinking! Just as Hannah was appealing to God, now sheappeals to Eli. She was obviously persuasive. In her distress sheexplains just what is upsetting her, and Eli is moved. He gives herhis blessing and prays that God will also bless her and give herwhat she is asking for.

We can almost imagine the change in Hannah, and even in the family.They get up early the following day, they worship, and they returnhome. And before long Hannah gives birth to a son and they call himSamuel (which means something like 'name of God' or 'asked ofGod'). Now the story of Samuel can begin.

To Ponder

Have there been times when you have bargainedwith God? Can you think of things you have promised to do - andhave you kept your promises?

Do you find it easy, or hard, to accept that Godanswers prayers - as with Hannah's prayer?

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