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Updated: Aug 21, 2023

1 Samuel 1:9-18

"Once when they had finished eating and drinking in Shiloh, Hannah stood up. Now Eli the priest was sitting on his chair by the doorpost of the Lord’s house.

In her deep anguish Hannah prayed to the Lord, weeping bitterly.

And she made a vow, saying, 'Lord Almighty, if You will only look on Your servant’s 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.'

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.

Eli thought she was drunk and said to her, 'How long are you going to stay drunk? Put away your wine.'

'Not so, my lord,' Hannah replied, 'I am a woman who is deeply troubled. I have not been drinking wine nor strong drink; I was pouring out my soul to the Lord. Do not take your servant for a wicked woman; I have been praying here out of my great anguish and grief.'

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."

I love a prayer like hers.

The prayer just before the promise

of God was made to her and fulfilled.

I'm talking about the silence before the singing.

The brokenness before the wholeness.

I believe the Lord treasures

a prayer like hers.

And I know He honored it.

It has encouraged me when I've wondered if my prayer of tears, born of brokenness, was appropriate and acceptable to throw before the King of Kings.

Here's a short of where Hannah was in life:

  • She and another woman shared her husband.

  • The other woman was able to bear children and Hannah, despite much trying, had not yet.

  • If that wasn't bad enough, the other woman teased and taunted her - to Hannah's breaking point - routinely.

  • Hannah was weak and weary from the fight and longing.

  • Hannah's husband loved her even more than the other woman - giving her a double portion at the time of sacrifice. Back in a day when a woman's value wasn't much more than a servant, nor expectations much higher, and a woman unable to bear children was seen as cursed or a burden rather than a blessing, his professed love would have been a needed encouragement, like water to a dying flower.

We all have moments when just standing - or kneeling - seems like the best we have to offer.

Sometimes I come home from work and it takes 30 to 45 minutes before the physical pain dies down so that I can sleep and, in that moment, with everything else going on, broken and missing my husband, laying there exhausted and just waiting for the pain to go away so that I can sleep, that's a moment where I say a prayer like hers.

Wordless moans and groans or moving our lips ---

sometimes that is all we have.

🧎‍♀️ A prayer like hers is when the need is so raw and desperate that nothing can touch it except the Lord.

🧎‍♀️ A prayer like hers is when there aren't adequate words to put to what you're feeling or walking through.

🧎‍♀️ A prayer like hers is when the intenseness of your spirit drives so deep and rebounds back so hard that the only communication that it can utter are moans that escape your lips because words will never be enough

🧎‍♀️ A prayer like hers is when you are being still but you are unable to catch your breath

🧎‍♀️ A prayer like hers is when the desires of your heart outnumber the words of your mouth.

Lord, let my words be few rather than be empty.

Let my heart remain strong when I am weak.

Let my love for your will outweigh my personal desires.

Let me not give up praying due to anguish, fear or exhaustion.

When I feel like I have no words left to say, Lord, let me pray a prayer like hers.

❤️ In truth,

Sarah Jane

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