“For this boy I prayed, and the Lord has given me my petition which I asked of Him. So I have also dedicated him to the Lord; as long as he lives he is dedicated to the Lord. And he worshiped the Lord there.” [1 Samuel 1:27-28]
WHAT’S GOING ON?
Hannah was a woman in distress. The first few chapters of 1 Samuel are fascinating and have to do with Hannah’s petition to God. She was barren and had not been able to have kids. Because of the culture she was in, this was a huge deal. She was ridiculed and seen as somewhat useless because of her inability to have children. This became too much for her to bear. She asked God for a child, and He gave her Samuel. Upon giving birth to Samuel, Hannah dedicated Him to the Lord, and he grew up serving in the temple. Hannah gave up the son God had given her. She gave him back to the Lord because her love for God was greater than even her obvious want for a child.
What can we learn from Hannah? She painfully wanted something. Hannah said that she was “oppressed in spirit” because she was so anxious for a child. Once God gave her this desire, she sacrificed her right to the boy as a sacrifice to God. In her gratitude, she dedicated Samuel to God and he grew up working in the temple. I think it’s interesting to point out Hannah's response to God. Chapter 2 includes a famous passage of scripture called “The Song of Hannah.” Hannah sings this song as worship to God. Her response to God moving in her life is worship. Is this our natural response to God? What has God given you, and where has He moved in your life? What was your response when these things happened? The book of Romans calls us to “offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God, for this is your spiritual act of worship.” Sacrifice involves surrendering something to God in order to yield our wants to His desires.
RESPOND: Ask yourself these questions
What is God calling you to sacrifice?
What role does worship have in your life?
What steps can you take to surrender more of your life to God?
Father, thank You for who You are. Thank you for all that You have done for me. May my response to You be worship. Show me what I can sacrifice and surrender to You. May my life be a living sacrifice to You. Teach me what this means. I love You. Amen.