My friend, you may know the story of Hannah, a godly woman who prayed earnestly for a child and was blessed with the birth of Samuel the prophet. But did you know that Hannah was also the mother of Samson, one of the most famous judges of Israel? Hannah’s story teaches us important lessons about prayer, faith, and God’s faithfulness.
- Hannah dealt with the pain of infertility but poured her heart out to God in prayer
- God heard Hannah’s earnest prayers and blessed her with a son, Samuel
- Hannah dedicated Samuel to the Lord and he became a great prophet
- Later in life, Hannah gave birth to another child named Samson
- Samson was a judge over Israel blessed with supernatural strength from God
- Despite Samson’s flaws, God used him to deliver Israel from the Philistines
- Like Hannah, we should bring our deepest desires to God in faithful prayer
Hannah’s Struggles with Infertility
In those days, being unable to have children was a source of shame and disgrace for a woman. My beloved, just imagine how difficult it must have been for Hannah! The book of 1 Samuel tells us that Hannah’s husband, Elkanah, had two wives – Hannah and Peninnah. Peninnah had children, but “the LORD had closed Hannah’s womb” (1 Samuel 1:5). Whenever the family went up to the house of the Lord, “Peninnah provoked her severely, to make her miserable, because the LORD had closed her womb” (1 Samuel 1:6). Can you feel Hannah’s pain and anguish? Being unable to have a child, combined with the cruel taunting of her rival, broke Hannah’s heart.
My friend, have you ever experienced the bitter disappointment of unfulfilled expectations and broken dreams? Have you cried out to God in your pain? Take comfort knowing that Hannah understands your suffering. Her situation seemed hopeless, but she did not lose faith. Instead, Hannah brought her petition earnestly before the God who hears our cries.
The Bible tells us, “The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit” (Psalm 34:18). Be encouraged – God sees your tears, and He will not abandon you in your distress. Bring your deepest pain to Him who can work miracles and revive your dreams once more!
Hannah’s Earnest Prayer
Though emotionally devastated, Hannah did not retaliate against Peninnah or fall into despair. Instead, she took her pain straight to the Lord in prayer. When Elkanah offered sacrifices at the Tabernacle in Shiloh, Hannah “was in bitterness of soul, and prayed to the LORD and wept in anguish” (1 Samuel 1:10). She vowed, “O LORD of hosts, if You will indeed look on the affliction of Your maidservant and remember me, and not forget Your maidservant, but will give Your maidservant a male child, then I will give him to the LORD all the days of his life” (1 Samuel 1:11).
Imagine Hannah weeping and crying out to God from the depth of her soul. Her earnest petition came from a surrendered heart, for she promised to dedicate any son back to the Lord’s service. Though it appeared impossible, Hannah believed God could open her womb and reverse her barrenness.
My friend, is there something you desperately long for? An urgent need or heartfelt dream? Follow Hannah’s example – pour out your heart to the Lord! Tell God your deepest desires and make your requests known to Him with faith and expectancy. Our God is the same yesterday, today and forever – the God who heard Hannah’s plea will also hear you. Keep praying and believing!
God Answers Hannah’s Prayer
The book of 1 Samuel records this beautiful turn of events: “Now it came to pass…that Hannah conceived and bore a son, and called his name Samuel, saying, ‘Because I have asked for him from the LORD’” (1 Samuel 1:19-20). God fulfilled His promise and Hannah gave birth to a son, just as she had prayed!
My beloved, isn’t this so encouraging? Your prayers are never in vain when you take them to the Lord. Though you may not understand God’s timing and His ways are higher than yours, be assured He hears you. Even when there seems to be no answer month after month or year after year, keep bringing your petitions before God’s throne of grace. Divine delays are not denials!
The Lord may work in a way you don’t expect – as He did for Hannah by blessing her with not just one, but two sons. Keep trusting Him, clinging to His promises, refusing to lose heart. The day will come when you too will proclaim in joy: “The LORD has granted me what I asked of him!” (1 Samuel 1:27). Your prayers will be answered!
Hannah Dedicates Samuel to the Lord
After Samuel was weaned, Hannah kept her vow to the Lord. Though it surely wasn’t easy giving up her long-awaited child, Hannah remained faithful to her promise. She brought Samuel to the Tabernacle and dedicated him to the Lord’s service saying, “For this child I prayed, and the LORD has granted me my petition which I asked of Him. Therefore I also have lent him to the LORD; as long as he lives he shall be lent to the LORD” (1 Samuel 1:27-28).
Imagine the depth of Hannah’s devotion! Even before Samuel was conceived, she surrendered him to God’s purposes. Hannah teaches us that the children God blesses us with are His – we steward them for a time, but they ultimately belong to the Lord. When God gives you what you asked for, are you willing to give it back to Him and trust His plan? Hannah’s selflessness allowed God to use Samuel in incredible ways. He became a mighty prophet who anointed kings and turned the nation back to God.
As parents, we must recognize our children are the Lord’s and not ours to keep. May we raise them in the fear and admonition of God, surrendering their lives to His will. When we give them back to the Lord, He will use them powerfully for His glory.
Hannah Gives Birth to Samson
The story takes a surprising turn in 1 Samuel 2 – it is revealed that the Lord blessed Hannah with five more children! The passage says, “And the LORD visited Hannah, so that she conceived and bore three sons and two daughters” (1 Samuel 2:21). My friend, can you imagine Hannah’s joy as the years passed, seeing her quiver full with six children in all? Truly, “He shall grant the desire of your heart” (Psalm 37:4).
Now here is where it gets intriguing. Though the Bible does not explicitly state it, Jewish tradition identifies one of Hannah’s sons as none other than Samson! Samson was a Nazirite from birth, set apart for God, just as Samuel had been. It makes perfect sense that Hannah would raise up another Nazirite son after seeing how God used Samuel. Though Samson had obvious flaws, God empowered him as a judge to deliver Israel from the oppressive Philistines. What an honor for Hannah to mother two of Israel’s greatest leaders!
Hannah’s faithful prayers resulted not only in Samuel but also in Samson. When you walk uprightly with God, blessings extend beyond just you – generations are impacted! Though Samson failed morally, he accomplished much good and was part of God’s redemptive plan. Hannah teaches us that when we honor God with our desires, He may bless us in more ways than we imagined. Keep praying and trusting His purposes!
Lessons from Hannah’s Story
As we wrap up this study on Hannah, the mother of Samson, let’s reflect on the key lessons from her life:
- God hears our prayers when we cry out to Him. Hannah poured her heart out to the Lord, and He answered her petition. Keep bringing your requests to God – He will not ignore His children when they call to Him!
- Dedicate everything back to God. Hannah gave both Samuel and Samson back to the Lord’s service. We must remember our children belong first to God. Dedicate every blessing back to the Giver!
- Trust God’s timing and will. Though it seemed hopeless, Hannah conceived in God’s perfect timing. Surrender your expectations to the Lord, even if He works differently than you imagined.
- God can use anyone powerfully. Despite Samson’s character flaws, God anointed him as a judge over Israel. Our inadequacies cannot limit God! Stay submitted to His will.
- Your prayers impact generations. Hannah’s faith resulted not just in Samuel but also in Samson. Seek God wholeheartedly – you never know the extent of His blessing!
My beloved friend, I pray the lessons from Hannah’s life will encourage you in your walk with God. Remember that the Lord who fulfilled Hannah’s deepest desire also knows the petitions in your heart. Keep bringing them before His throne of grace with expectant faith. Though His timing and ways are higher, God always answers the earnest prayers of His children according to His perfect will. May you be blessed abundantly as you honor Him!