Monday, May 7, 2012

I Samuel Pt 12

 Taking care of what belongs to God
1 Sam 1:21-23
This man Elkanah went up with all his family to make the yearly sacrifice to the LORD and to keep his vow 

(I wonder what his vow was? Did he pray that his wife would conceive?) but Hannah did not go up with them. Instead she told her husband, "Once    
the boy is weaned (some sources say that this could have taken up to 3 years), I will bring him and appear before the LORD, and he will remain there from then on." -
So her husband Elkanah said to her, "Do what you think best. Stay until you have weaned him. May the LORD make good your promise." So the woman stayed and nursed her son until she had weaned him.

In a similar fashion to Moses' mother (Jochebed) who nursed and cared for him in preparation for Pharaoh's house and God's will; So Hannah would nurse and ready her son Samuel for the House and Calling of God.

May we be like These women and prepare and encourage the 'young treasures' around us for His purpose as well.

Grace and peace

Thursday, May 3, 2012

I Samuel pt 11

 Joy will last beyond the moment!
1 Sam. 1:19
Hannah woke up early the next morning and worshiped before the Lord, then went back home to Ramah. She was still not pregnant, but she praised God as if she was.
Then in vs.19b-20 it says " Elkanah lay with HANNAH his WIFE, and the LORD remembered her. So in the course of time Hannah conceived and GAVE BIRTH to a son. She called him Samuel... "What a delight y'all for her to finally have and hold what she had so desperately longed for! She had to have been overjoyed!

 This is what I see that Hannah has done with her barreness:
- Her brokenness came first
-Then her pouring out her heart to God
- Next came faith which led to worship
- Then Corresponding actions ( she had to do her part :-)

This is not a formula, but an observation and I believe the principles are still applicable today.

WITHOUT FAITH it is IMPOSSSiBLE to please God, For he that comes to HIM must BELIEVE that HE IS (exist), and that HE REWARDS those who Earnestly (seriously) seek HIM. Heb. 11:6

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Samuel pt 10

1 Sam. 1:
After you have given your burdens to the Lord, do you feel lighter or is the heaviness still there?
At this point in the story, Hannah has gotten as close to God as could. She went to stand at the doorpost of the Lord's Temple. Eli was sitting on a chair. There Hannah poured out her heart to God, mixed in with a river of tears. According to what she knew God could do, she pleads with Him to remember her. Then she informs Eli (the priest) of her grief and her prayer to God. When understanding comes, he blesses her with a word of PEACE. She takes it to heart. Her response is "May your servant ( Hannah) find favor in your eyes".
Then the next sentence gives us the proof that she has left her burdens and grief with God. It says in vs.18b 'Then she went her way and ATE something and her FACE was no longer downcast.' Hannah was determined not to take back what she had given to God. The proof of her lighter load and faith that 'God would handle it' was that her appetite returned and her face was NO Longer DOWNCAST.
Her faith was expressed in real ways even though what she was praying for had NOT YET become tangible. It reminds me of the scripture that says " NOW FAITH is the substance of things HOPED for the EVIDENCE of things NOT seen". Heb. 11:1

'Cause sometimes BELIEVING is SEEING! ;-)

Notes from I Samuel pt 9

1 Sam. 1:17
Don't we all hate it when our words or actions are twisted by someone else and we are accused falsely? Yes, None of us like it.
When Eli mistook Hannah's grieving for drunkenness, She responded like a pro. She did not put her hand on her hip, and bobble her head..Lol! She responded with HUMILITY and with TRUTH. 

Her words were full of grace. She said "Not so My Lord (to Eli the priest), I am a woman who is Deeply troubled. I have not been DRINKING wine or beer, I was POURING OUT my SOUL to the LORD...
When she spoke, she was believable. Her actions supported her story. With a little bit of clarity he could now see her actions in a different light. He gave up his preconceived notion for the truth she offered.
Because of this, Eli added his blessing to her prayers by saying
"Go in PEACE, and May the God of Israel GRANT you what you have ASKED of HIM."

If you are humbling standing in
'Truth' then May this apply to you as well..."Go in peace and may the God of Israel GRANT you what YOU have ASKED of HIM.

Stay tuned :-)
Grace and peace

Friday, April 27, 2012

Notes from I Samuel pt 8


1 Sam. 1:12-14
"As She kept on praying to the Lord, Eli OBSERVED her MOUTH. Hannah was PRAYING in her HEART, and her lips were moving but her voice was not heard."
(When we are only looking at things in the natural or at first glance, we too might miss what's truly going on... Only God can see and know the heart, that's why HE is the only ONE qualified to JUDGE it.)
 Hannah was so distraught that she couldn't audibly get the words out. She prayed in her heart and her lips were moving, but her pain prevented the words from being heard ( by man that is). Eli SAW her and ACCUSED her of being drunk. He MIS-judged because he could not comprehend the full picture of what was going on. He could not see on the inside. But ya'll, GOD COULD and HE DID! .

The scripture also says in 1 Sam 16:7b "Man looks at the outward appearance but the LORD looks at the heart."

He SEES you and KNOWS the translation of every TEAR.

stay tuned...

Grace and peace

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Note from I Samuel pt 7

7. 1 Sam. 1:11

While Hannah was crying and praying to the Lord, she made a vow saying "O LORD Almighty, if you will only look upon your servants misery and remember me and not forget your servant but give her a son, then I will give him to the Lord for all the days of his life, and no razor will ever be used on his head."

 So basically she said, Lord I am your servant, if you Remember me and give me 'what I desire most', I will give 'what I desire most' back to you". In essence, "If you give me an 'insurance policy for my future 'or bragging rights to get back at my enemy' I will give it all back to you. '
It would be worth it to know that I have not been forgotten but remembered.' Her prayer alone showed a transfer of trust from man to God.
 She also said that if God gave her a son, she would never cut his hair. This was considered  a Nazirite vow. It showed that the boy/man was set apart to God for His purpose. Do you remember another long haired guy in the Bible? Yep, Samson.
 Hannah had undoubtedly heard stories of this hero and his 'once barren mother'. ( Judges 13) The angel told (Samson's mom) that Although she was unable to have children, God was going to give her one anyway. His hair was never to be cut, which was a public sign of a sacred calling; and he would deliver the nation of Israel from their enemies. Y'all, I believe that Hannah was not only praying for a son, but for a deliverer as well.
 She was drawing faith from the stories of old that she had heard. Stories from other women who were once barren and God had not only given them children, but children who did GREAT things! Women like Sarah, who became the mother of nations and kingdoms thru her son Isaac; Rebekah who became the mother of Jacob (Israel, father of the Jewish nation) and Esau (father of nations); and Samson's mother, who's son became famous for his super human strength and deliverance of God's people.

In the same way, we draw faith from THEIR stories and put our trust in God, who is the SAME yesterday, TODAY and forever.

Stay tuned! Grace and peace

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Notes from Samuel pt 6

6. 1 Sam 1:10 ( another lesson from Hannah)

Hannah has just STOOD up from the place where they were eating and drinking. Eli the priest was SITTING by the doorpost of the LORD's temple (they were in church). 

 Vs 10 "In BITTERNESS of soul Hannah WEPT MUCH and PRAYED to the Lord." y'all I believe that this was step one in Hannah's turn around.
She went from weeping much and losing her appetite to... crying her heart out in PRAYER. It may not have seemed like a big deal or even felt like a 'lightening bolt' experience to Hannah, but this small act had HUGE potential. It was the difference between trying to carry a ton of bricks around in a backpack, or giving those bricks to a brick layer so that he could build a wall, a road or a house with them.
In the same way, We were NOT made to carry our grief and pain alone. 1 Peter 5:6-7 invites and instructs us to : "Humble yourselves under God's MIGHTY hand, that he may LIFT you up in due time. Cast ( throw down) your cares (anxiety) on HIM because HE CARES (pays attention to, and carries those things that makes you anxious) FOR YOU."
May we all accept the invitation and follow the instructions.

Grace and peace y'all