The Journey of Hannah’s Prayer
Bible Study | October 14, 2020
Hannah is a woman in the Bible who dealt with a lot of adversity in her life, yet she was steadfast in seeking out the Lord. In 1 Samuel 1, we learn about Hannah’s story and how she was one of two wives to Elkanah. Hannah was barren, taunted by her foe, and was angry with God. But despite Hannah’s challenges, she was determined to surrender and submit her cares before the Lord. She prayed through her pain and resolved to continue to trust God.
Like Hannah, we also face difficult challenges and difficult seasons in life, but being diligent in seeking God in prayer will guide, uplift, and encourage us to move forward in faith. Our circumstances may not always yield our desired outcome, but God wants us to continuously pray to Him with courage, boldness, and expectation.
Here are four lessons we can learn from Hannah’s story and prayer life:
- Be Persistent in Prayer
In 1 Samuel 1, we see that Hannah is barren and is dealing with her husband Elkanah’s second wife Peninnah taunting her for not having children (1 Samuel 1:2). Hannah was angry with God and wept before the Lord. Despite the difficult circumstances she faced, Hannah persistently prayed to God.
1 Samuel 1:12 states that she kept on praying to the Lord. And her prayers were not just a one-time event, but she prayed with an intensity and focus. 1 Samuel 1:15 states she “poured her soul before the Lord.”
God calls for us to persistently pray for strength, wisdom and petition our requests with consistency, confidence, and steadfastness. When things are not going to plan or the outcome is not what we would like, it is easy to stop praying or believe that God has abandoned us. Praying to God persistently deepens our relationship with God and is an act of worship and surrender. When we pray, we acknowledge that we are not in control and are welcoming God’s sovereignty.
I invite you to not lose heart and continue to pray persistently to God, surrendering every emotion, doubt, fear, and anxiety over to Him. God welcomes us like a loving parent and hears us through prayer.
- Surrender Your All Before God
When Hannah prayed, she did not hold back. She poured all her emotions before the Lord. 1 Samuel 1:16 states “I have been praying here out of great anguish and grief.” Although God already knew Hannah’s plight, she surrendered every raw emotion she was feeling.
As we continue to grow in our relationship with God and spiritual maturity, God does not want us to sugarcoat where we are. At times, we may believe that God cannot handle the weight of our situation. However, in our greatest seasons of strife or despair, God desires for us to draw close to Him. God can handle every weight, burden, uncertainty, or fear we have.
When words are not adequate, Romans 8:26 states, “the Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans.” God’s great love for us covers us each day. Surrender your all to the Lord and allow God to move in and through you and your circumstance.
- Remember God’s Faithfulness
As Hannah prays to God, she gives Him thanks and remembers His faithfulness. Hannah recognized God’s ultimate sovereignty and that God’s faithfulness prevailed.
During trying times, remembering God’s faithfulness will strengthen, encourage, and remind us that He has not abandoned us. After God granted Hannah the blessing of her son Samuel, she continued to give God praise. Similarly, to Hannah, our unwavering commitment to pursuing God in prayer and thanking Him for continued blessings keeps us be connected and encouraged that God has not forgotten about us.
As we continue to reflect and give God thanks and praise for His faithfulness, our perspective will encourage and will serve as a reminder of God’s steadfast presence in our lives.
- Speak Victory Despite Opposition
Hannah was taunted initially for being barren by Elkanah’s second wife Peninnah for many years (1 Samuel 1:6-7). While Hannah wept and was distraught by this ongoing ridicule, she did not stop praying and seeking the Lord. Although her circumstances were overwhelming and she could have easily lost hope, she resolved to be victorious in Christ Jesus (1 Samuel 2:1b).
When we face difficult seasons or relationships that seem unbearable or hopeless, let us be encouraged by Hannah’s commitment to trusting God. Speak life and victory over our circumstances, spirit, and future. When we are distracted by opposition, negativity, or self -doubt that will come, we can resolve to seek God’s word for renewed hope and walk in the victory that is in Christ Jesus.
Walking in victory does not mean that our challenges will instantaneously disappear, but it does mean that we have decided to not have them consume us. Begin to walk in victory each day and let God guide you through seasons of opposition and strife.
Prayer Is a Powerful Tool
Hannah’s story is a powerful one of strength, courage, persistent prayer, and unwavering commitment to seeking God’s face. She faced challenging circumstances, felt discouraged and angry with God. Despite her challenges, feelings of rejection and abandonment, she did not stop praying. She prayed when she was unsure if she would ever have children, and she prayed when God blessed her with a son.
If you are in a season of ongoing adversity, challenges, or opposition, I invite you to be encouraged by Hannah’s story and her resilience in seeking God. Continue to be persistent in prayer, surrender all your emotions to God, remember God’s faithfulness, and speak victory despite opposition.
Prayer is a powerful tool that God wants us to use to stay connected with Him, strengthen our spiritual maturity, and use as a weapon to overcome the tactics of the enemy. When adversity comes, the good news is that God desires for us to draw closer to Him and we are victorious through Christ Jesus.