1st Samuel 1.
There is something very fascinating about Hannah, who we know very well, and sometimes overlook. She represents one’s ability to change his/her situations.
Are you in a situation that you don’t like and you don’t know how to change it? Welcome to the School of Hannah!
Hannah was part of a family that was unyielding when Israel went astray. Her family was among the few that remained steadfast, who believed in the existence and sovereignty of God.
But Hannah was childless. Like many people now, she was stagnant, there was no progress in her life and time was not on her side. And it continued for years.
But if change must happen, there are things that like Hannah, we must understand the principles for change:
- We must hate that situation: (vs 4-7) Hannah grieved so much that she refused even the luxury her husband was showering on her. If you are comfortable with the stipend your situation is bringing you, then change might be difficult.
- Only God can give true change not man: vs 9-10. Hannah knew one thing from all the years her family spent worshipping God; man is not the solution to her problems.
The only person capable of understanding her heart without judgement was God and so she didn’t go seeking the priest of God, but God himself.
Sometimes we go looking for help from friends and prayer houses, thinking that that is where our solution lies.
We ought to know that God is our author and has the power to change…Sure enough, Hannah was judged by the priest at first sight..
- She threw away dignity(pride) Before God, (verse 10). Hannah threw away her dignity much to the disapproval of man(the priest). But she knew that God’s opinion of her was more important than man’s. If we must change, we must stop looking for the approval of man. Once you are approved by God, man will surely approve you. Throw your pride at the feet of God and get His approval first..
- She employed the power of a vow: vs 11. God values promise so much that He let His son die to fulfill it. A man, they say, is bound by his words. It was her way of showing God her commitment to Him and attributing the glory to Him instead of Baal or any God Israel was serving at that time.
God needs to be assured that you won’t attribute his glory to someone else and so committing to God through promises will go a long way to change your situation. This was all it took for a friend of mine to receive a long awaited admission into an international University..
- Hannah persisted in patience: vs12. This is a very powerful verse. In fact this played a strong role in Eli remembering her afterwards. She prayed for a long time while Eli watched. Sometimes it looks to those around you like you are foolish, but persist and wait upon God. Your resilience alone is a message to those watching and your testimony will be the breakthrough for another.
- She believed. Vs 18. That was the Hallmark to faith. She behaved as though she had been calling them. She had the substance of the thing she hoped for, the evidence of the thing not yet seen.
And sure enough Hannah’s life never remained the same, because one time, just one time, she decided to do things differently.
If your life has been unpleasant year after year, maybe it is an indication that you have to do things differently.