”I am a woman deeply troubled,” is how Hannah describes herself. For years, she had wanted a child, but alas, her womb was closed. Her rival taunted her, made fun of her because of her barrenness. Her husband was frustrated because he didn’t understand why having a child was more important than his love. So Hannah wept bitterly before the Lord.
Many of us can understand Hannah’s frustration. It may not be a baby you are trying to conceive. Perhaps for years you have been praying for a child to come home, a marriage to restore, a sickness to leave, a business to start, a book to write, a financial blessing to come. You wait and you wait. You see others around you have their dreams come true and you have become “deeply troubled”.
I’ve been there. I’m there now.
I woke up this morning around 4:00 am. I read the story of Hannah. I prepared to write but I was sleepy. As I drifted back to sleep, God said loudly, “PREPARE.” As I was waking up, a few hours later, I heard, “WAIT”. Two things I’m not good at – preparing & waiting.
Perhaps, these two things are the keys to breakthrough.
Hannah’s preparation included believing and honoring her promises. When the priest, Eli, saw Hannah’s anguish, he said, “Go in peace, and may the God of Israel grant you what you have asked of him.” Upon hearing the word, without any physical evidence, Hannah believed. Her face was no longer downcast. Hope entered her heart. Her pregnancy was not immediate. The Bible says, “in the course of time” she conceived. But while she waited, she believed.
Finally she conceived and gave birth to a son. But this was perhaps, the most difficult part of the preparation, honoring her promise. Hannah, now, had to give away the son she had waited to conceive. Not just give him away, but give her son to a man who had failed to properly raise his own boys. But Hannah honored her promise.
Now Hannah had to wait. Every year, she went to the temple to visit her little priest. I’m sure her son, Samuel, was so cute wearing his little ephod, ministering before the Lord. She visited her son, only to return home empty handed, year after year. I wondered if she questioned her decision to give away her son. I wonder if she were tempted to hold onto Samuel and not let him go.
But as we wait, we must learn not to settle for less than God’s best. God’s best for Hannah was not the one son. It was three boys and two girls. Waiting for God’s best is difficult and it takes faith. But we are blessed beyond measure when we wait. And let’s not forget, Samuel went on to be one of the most beloved and respected priest and prophet in Israel’s history.
Are you deeply troubled? Prepare for God’s promise. Believe His promise. Obey what He calls you to do. Wait well. Don’t settle for less than what God wants to do in you! Your breakthrough is coming.
“Then Hannah prayed and said: “My heart rejoices in the Lord; in the Lord my horn is lifted high. My mouth boasts over my enemies, for I delight in your deliverance. “There is no one holy like the Lord; there is no one besides you; there is no Rock like our God.”
1 Samuel 2:1-2 NIV