Day 25


1 Samuel 1:1-2:2, 1 Samuel 2:18-21

BY Amanda Bible Williams

I bow in worship every morning when I wake up.

I slap the alarm notification on my phone for the third time, silently and sleepily vowing to get to bed earlier tonight than the night before. When the second alarm goes off, also for the third time (I set at least two because morning and I are not buddies), I slap the screen again. This time I rub my eyes and keep them open. Then, I put the phone down and get up.

Except, before I put the phone down and get up, I check my notifications. Relax! It’ll only take a minute! And as one minute becomes 10 or 20, I scroll through texts, emails, and social media, nonchalantly consuming whatever happens to flash on the screen. Before I step foot out of bed, I’ve set my heart and mind at the feet of my iPhone.

I bow in worship every morning when I wake up. But sometimes I bow to the wrong thing.

Maybe my tendency to distraction is why my heart is so drawn to Hannah’s story. I listened again to these first two chapters of 1 Samuel just this morning, and I felt a flutter in my chest as the chapters repeated. In only a few pages, Scripture describes Hannah praying again and again to the Lord, pouring out her heart, bowing in worship. I’m sure she wasn’t perfect—but, oh, how she prayed!

Hannah’s prayers were not obligatory, half-hearted, or empty. She prayed honestly and openly; she prayed as if her life depended on it. “Deeply hurt, Hannah prayed to the Lord and wept with many tears,” we read in 1 Samuel 1:10. “I’ve been praying from the depth of my anguish and resentment,” she said. From the depth of her anguish and resentment. The good, the bad, and the painful—Hannah brought it all to her God as an act of worship.

In fact, she prayed so earnestly that a priest named Eli accused her of being drunk when he watched her at the tabernacle. “Hannah was praying silently, and though her lips were moving, her voice could not be heard” (1 Samuel 1:13).

I like to pray out loud when I drive because I think anyone observing will assume I’m talking on the phone. Evidently, Hannah wouldn’t have given it enough thought to care.

So what is it about Hannah that gives her the kind of worshipping heart I long to have?

Why is prayer Hannah’s first resort instead of her last?

The Bible does not tell us outright, but I think we’re given some solid clues.

She believes in God’s power. Hannah approaches God with reverence (“Lord of Hosts, if you will take notice of your servant’s affliction…”) and she asks boldly for His blessing (“remember and [do] not forget me…”).

She trusts in God’s goodness. Hannah offers her beloved son Samuel as God’s servant before he is even conceived (“I will give him to the Lord all the days of his life…”). My mama-heart can hardly imagine such trusting resolve.

She rests in God’s presence. We get a glimpse of how Hannah responds in sorrow (“I am a woman with a broken heart… I’ve been pouring out my heart before the Lord”) and even how she begins her day in the midst of hard times of waiting (“Elkanah and Hannah got up early to bow in worship before the Lord”).

Hannah’s habit of prayer was less about her goodness and more about God’s greatness.

After Samuel’s birth, Hannah carried her son up to the tabernacle, dedicating him to the Lord. It’s here that we see her back where she started in Chapter 1: presenting her whole self in prayer before God. Though her prayers of anguish had become a song of thanksgiving, Hannah’s posture was still the same. In supplication and in praise, she bowed in worship before the Lord.

I don’t honestly worship my inbox or my Instagram feed, but I do turn to empty distractions rather than turning my eyes to Jesus. I don’t truly believe prayer is pointless, but the opportunities I don’t take to bow before the Lord make me wonder.

Oh, Lord, please forgive me for giving my worshipful glances and prayerful pleas to anyone and anything other than you!

Sisters, we serve a powerful, loving, and good God—the God who is like no other.

When our lives ache with need, may we bring them to the throne. When our hearts break, may we pour them out to God. When we rise in the morning, may we rise in worship.

“There is no one holy like the Lord. There is no one besides You!”
– 1 Samuel 2:2

Post Comments (163)

163 thoughts on "Hannah"

  1. Ellen Wood says:

    I’m definitely guilty of this! I think oh I’ll pray after I’ve done this or after that because I think those things need to be done right away! I prioritise other things over the Lord!

  2. Paige Petron says:

    This was needed for me. I totally relate to the message. I have been seeing the number 66 a lot recently and didn’t admit I was seeing it for awhile. I googled the biblical meaning of this # and it’s idolatry. My knee jerk reaction was pointing to this being the case. Funny thing is, on a Friday night Bible study we went over idolatry, that next day I finally admitted that I was seeing this # and saw it 3 times that day, and then on Sunday the sermon was on idolatry… I don’t believe in coincidences and I think one of my idols is my phone with the distracting apps and YouTube. Pray for me as I lay this idol down and whatever more that I don’t realize.

  3. Heather Allen says:

    Talk about needed! This message is coming at a time in my life where this very relatable! I have been desperate yearning for something in my life, and instead of going to the LORD and pouring my heart out to him, I have been pouring my heart out to friends and family. No more — today I resolve to PRAY boldly. To pray like Hannah.

  4. Andrea Z. says:

    Prayer should be our first instinct, not out last resort. I love that! And I too was an iPhone worshipper first thing on the morning, but decided to first this do devotionals and found I had so much more time to dedicate to meaningful things. I’m still a work in progress but intentionally being aware of what you spend your time worshipping is so vital for growth.

  5. K says:

    This is my favorite post so far. I would love to have a prayer life as Hannah did. I just finished an entire book on the power of prayer, but this post sums it up so well. Thank you.

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