Week 4: Confessions of an Overwhelmed Wife

Hannah (1 Samuel 1)

God Almighty,

I come before you but cannot even stand in your presence. I am broken beyond words. I wait, and I wait, but I get no answer. My eyes have cried themselves dry, my throat parched.

I have tried to let go of this desire to have a child. I want Your will, not mine. But no matter how hard I try, I just can’t shake loose of these chains.

Just when I think I have turned a corner and see progress, I am knocked back on my back with pain. It all washed back over me, leaving me right back in the grief.

I have given the best years of my life to waiting. What is left of me now? When will You answer me? Even the priest drove me away yesterday. He thought I came to the temple drunk and tried to make me leave. Of all people, I thought he would have compassion, but again I was told to be quiet.

But my heart cries out! If I am really supposed to let this go, Lord, You will have to give me the strength. I cannot let go of it on my own. I am stuck, afraid to let go of a dream. Am I so wrong? Isn’t this desire good? The desire to have a baby with my dear husband? He wants me to just love him. He asks me why isn’t that enough. Lord, why isn’t it enough? How come I am punished for a pure and good desire? Why is it so easy for Peninnah? I hate my jealousy. It’s so easy for her, year after year. She is so happy and proud of her children. I am happy for her, but Lord, it’s bittersweet.

I also worry about what others will say. I feel them whispering and ignoring me. After all, something must be wrong with me. Maybe it’s contagious, and they will catch it. So they leave me alone.

Please hear my groans, God, because I am all out of words.

The Overwhelmed Woman

My dear sweet Hannah,

Come to me, all you who are weary and heavy burdened, and I will give you rest. I am gentle. I am the Comfort you seek and the Provider you desire. I know every hair on your head. I knew you even before your own beloved mother conceived you.

I knit you in your mother’s womb; you are an incredible design from your head to your toes. How I have loved watching your life unfold, the adventures, and the boldness of your heart. I hear that in your prayers, too, you know what you desire, and you are not afraid to come to me. I love that! Come to me often! I am never tired of hearing your requests.

I will meet all your needs, according to the riches of my glory. When your heart is overwhelmed, come to Me. I am never weary, and I will never let you fall. I will not just answer your prayers; I will also provide for your physical needs. I love you, and I will give you the desires of your heart. Trust me.

Your Heavenly Father

(Isaiah 40:8, Matthew 11:29, Psalms 22:10, Philippians 4:19)

1) God answers us in so many ways. His response is rarely in our timing, but it’s always perfectly in His. What is something you are waiting for right now?

2) Hannah’s boldness would result in a great prophet of God coming. So often, our bold prayers of something that is a deep desire of our hearts come from a refusal to give up. What prayer of yours can you faithfully keep bringing before God?

Read 1 Samuel 1:19-21 to find out how God answered Hannah’s prayer.

1 Samuel 1:19-21 (NIV)

Eli answered, “Go in peace, and may the God of Israel grant you what you have asked of him. She said, “May your servant find favor in your eyes.” Then she went her way and ate something, and her face was no longer downcast. Early the next morning they arose and worshiped before the Lord and then went back to their home at Ramah. Elkanah made love to his wife Hannah, and the Lord remembered her. So in the course of time Hannah became pregnant and gave birth to a son. She named him Samuel, saying, “Because I asked the Lord for him.”