Tuesday, October 30, 2012
A couple of days ago, I started reading 1st and 2nd Samuel in the Old Testament. I want to use King David in my perseverance through story project. Hannah’s story is at the beginning of the first book. The story will not leave my thoughts. I couldn’t get past the thought that she asked God to give her a baby even though she knew she would give that baby up at the age of about three. I couldn’t wrap my head around that. Three is when my children became more interesting. Yes, I loved them as babies, but each new age they reached, I would have more and more fun with them. And yes, I love the teen years.
Finally, I blurted out the question to my husband. Why would Hannah ask for a baby only to give the baby away?
My ever patient husband said, “I gave our children to God when they were born.”
“Well, I did too, but I still kept them.” Years after our last child was born we talked about how the first Sunday after they came home from the hospital each of us dedicated our children to God silently without ever telling the other. Yes, later we baptized them, but we dedicated the earlier.
“But I will be very happy if they become priests.” His logical approach was killing me.
“Yes, but not give them to a priest when they are three.”
We continued to discuss the fact that Hannah lived in a different time and place. The honor she would receive from having a son study under a priest would be phenomenal. I went back and read the story again and paid special attention to her prayer to God. Hannah suffered at the hands of the other wife. She had many children while Hannah had none. I can imagine the undermining words the other wife would say to her. Hannah’s status in the family would be so much lower because she didn’t have children. Even in today’s society, people are looked at differently for not having children. Mean things are said. By God giving Hannah a child, her life would indeed get better even when she gave the baby to the priest Eli.
As I continued to read the story, I learned Hannah did go visit her son as he grew up. She was also given three more sons and two daughters for her honoring God. I love the story. I now understand better why she gave up her son. I would love it if my children became priests and nuns. I also thank God that I get to keep them until they are young adults. I am not so sure I would be as strong as Hannah and give them up any sooner.
Blessings to you all.