The Hannah Principle
This afternoon I was reading 1 Samuel and I recalled writing a blog post based on this passage (website has since been deleted) two years ago. I thought I would share it here on THE MOM JUNGLE today. It's so encouraging to see how faithful God has been to me since originally writing this.
ORIGINALLY POSTED SUMMER 2012
TEXT: 1 SAMUEL: 1-20
I’ve been mulling over this passage for a few weeks. I so relate to the heartache that Hannah experiences at the beginning of this passage, yet I find myself challenged by her incredible example of pursuit, perseverance, and positivity.
There are obvious themes in this chapter such as the power of prayer, the fruitfulness of one pouring out their heart to God, and the miracles of an all-powerful God. Yet there is one thing that I have glossed over until now.
I’ve read this story countless times, and it wasn’t until recently that I realized how profound her reaction to Eli’s prophecy was (verse 18). It really struck a chord with me. Earlier in the chapter we see that her distress disrupted her life so deeply that she couldn’t even bring herself to eat. However, after Eli’s words her whole countenance changed (vs 18). She didn’t experience the miracle immediately as it says in verse 20 “so in the course of time” yet she stayed positive from that day in the temple.
Hannah received a promise and because of that she gave herself permission to be happy and positive. I have struggled with this in my own life. I received many promises during this past year and I have struggled to believe and receive them making it difficult to remain positive. I’ve had a lack of faith, which has given way to fear, which has been exasperated by a slow (at least to me anyways) physical recovery.
A great deal of this is because I have believed in a lie. The lie I have believed is that if God sees me happy, then He won’t think that I have this desire anymore. Like Hannah I have received a word from God, but I had this mindset that if I allowed those encouraging words to give me total peace and positivity that God wouldn’t grant us children.
Paul writes in Philippians 4:11-13 that he has learned to be content regardless of the circumstances. This man faced tremendous hardship. He was wrongfully imprisoned, shipwrecked twice, beaten almost to death, experienced starvation…etc.
Picture shipwrecked Paul. Now, if a passing boat saw his “SOS” sign on the sand and attempted to rescue him, do you think Paul would say, “Don’t rescue me from Cast Away Island because I’m content in all circumstances?” Of course not! I think he would leap in that boat! However Paul knew that in all seasons God as with him and had a plan for His life. He could be content in all situations knowing God would see Him through.
2 Peter 5:7 says, “Cast all your cares on Him for He cares for you.” One thing I am working on is casting all my cares on God and leaving them with Him. God never designed us to carry the weight of our burdens on our shoulders. In addition to growing in my faith and maturity as a follower of Christ, I am so determined to give myself permission to be positive, as I fully trust in His promises.
God gets the last word. His promises will all be fulfilled. The choice we have to make is how are we going to live before that day arrives. I choose to believe and receive his promises… and to smile and enjoy my day.