Archive for September 7th, 2006

In God’s Time

Thursday, September 7th, 2006

Today’s scripture: 1 Samuel 2:1-10 and Luke 1:46-55 (NRSV) (The Message)

As you read, consider: What might God be saying to me in this passage? Summarize your thoughts in a sentence or two before reading on.

My thoughts (Pam Beutler):

When reading Hannah’s Song of Thanksgiving, it reminded me so much of Mary’s Magnificat that I could not help but include it. Here are two great women of faith who spoke of pride and humility in their prayers. Both women were steeped in the Hebrew scriptures. One gave birth to a great prophet of God; the other, to the son of God.

Hannah had no children — which was a source of great distress to her. Yet she remained steadfast in her worship of God and asked for what she deeply desired. She trusted in her Lord and God, despite her situation. She held God above all and had complete faith. She prayed with her whole heart and soul knowing that all things were possible.

When Mary learned from the Angel that she was to become the mother of God, the Messiah, she broke into prayer of exaltation and praise. Like Hannah, she acknowledged her lowly state and was overwhelmed by the condescension of God.

In both women’s prayers, they accepted God as their Savior, blessed God’s name, and knew that God would take care of them when they humbled themselves. Hannah and Mary found their strength in God’s love. And they both found this strength before the promises were fulfilled. Just the statement of God’s promise was sufficient.

And in time, God’s promises came to be. The Lord blessed Hannah with a son, the great prophet Samuel, who appointed the king David from whom the bloodline of the Savior began.

How often do we feel that God has forgotten us? We feel alone. Maybe, like Hannah, we don’t have what our heart truly desires. Maybe it’s a spouse, or children. Or it could be a relationship that’s broken, that leaves us scarred and empty. Maybe it’s a career that seems dead-end. Or it could be the day-to-day struggle, the thousand little disappointments and challenges. Whatever is holding us down, do we, like Hannah, fall on our knees in our desperation and thank God for all God has done? Find strength in God’s promises and know — God has a plan for all of us.

Like these great women of faith, God comforts us with the scriptures and the Spirit. For God’s plan isn’t always in the direction we thought we were going — but it will impact us in blessings far beyond what we had anticipated.

Thought for the day: “Just give it to God” may be a trite old saying — but it worked for Hannah.

Today, let’s join together in prayer for: the growth of the “fruit of the Spirit” in our own lives — specifically, for peace. Ask God for peace; ask God to show you ways to cultivate peace.

We encourage you to include a time of prayer with this reading. Use the item above as a starting point, or consider the guidelines on the How to Pray page.

"Be still, and know that I am God." Psalm 46:10
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