118T - Hannah and Samuel

"In the Midst of Thee" - volumes 1 & 2 contain 200 favorite Glenn Rawson Stories - at: History of the Saints . org

From “In the Midst of Thee” – volume 2.

It’s Mothers’ Day! And since it is Mothers’ Day, there is a story in the Old Testament that to me embodies motherhood. It‘s the story of Hannah and Samuel.

Hannah considered herself a woman greatly afflicted. She was barren, unable to bear children. And though her husband loved her dearly and treated her well, still there was an ache in her heart that only a child could fill and God could understand.

One day on an excursion to the temple at Shiloh, Hannah went before the Lord in fasting and prayer. The record says, “… she was in bitterness of soul, and prayed unto the Lord, and wept sore.” (1 Samuel 1:10)

So anxious was she to bear a child that in her prayer “… she vowed a vow, and said, O Lord of hosts, if thou wilt indeed look on the affliction of thine handmaid, and remember me, and not forget thine handmaid, but wilt give unto thine handmaid a man child, then I will give him unto the Lord all the days of his life …” (1 Samuel 1:11)

As Hannah prayed, Eli, the priest, watched her. He came over to her, and to him she poured out the anguish of her heart – whereupon, Eli as the Lord’s representative and moved by the Spirit of God, he gave Hannah a promise saying, “… Go in peace: and the God of Israel grant thee thy petition that thou hast asked of him.” (1 Samuel 1:17)

Hannah was a woman of great faith. With that promise secure in her heart, she went on her way rejoicing and at peace. Not long after, true to that promise Hannah conceived and bore a son and called his name Samuel, which interestingly enough, means ‘heard of God.’

For three years after that Hannah refuses to leave Samuel and leave home. She is attentive to his every need. Then comes that day that must have rent her soul. After the appropriate sacrifices are offered, she presents him to Eli at the temple saying, “… my lord, … I am the woman that stood by thee here, praying unto the Lord. For this child I prayed; and the Lord hath given me my petition which I asked of him: Therefore also I have lent him to the Lord; as long as he liveth he shall be lent to the Lord. …” (1 Samuel 1:26-28) And so it was.

Samuel became a mighty prophet in Israel. And Hannah, that wonderful woman who had craved so dearly the privilege of being a mother, for her faithfulness she was blessed with three more sons and two daughters. God keeps His promises.

Thank God for those women today, though declining in numbers, who still yearn to be mothers; who still pray to the God of Israel for the privilege of bearing children, who still refuse to leave them for other pursuits, whose hearts are still rent by the great sacrifice of giving them up to the service of the Lord. They will, like Hannah, change history, and Heaven will honor them forever and ever.

Glenn Rawson – May 1998
Music: Janice Kapp Perry Favorites, track 10 (edited) – Marvin Goldstein
Song: As Sisters in Zion – The Janice Kapp Perry Chorus
www.soundsofsunday.com