On one occasion, Hannah got up after they ate and drank at Shiloh. The priest Eli was sitting on a chair by the doorpost of the Lord’s temple. Deeply hurt, Hannah prayed to the Lord and wept with many tears. Making a vow, she pleaded, “Lord of Armies, if you will take notice of your servant’s affliction, remember and not forget me, and give your servant a son, I will give him to the Lord all the days of his life, and his hair will never be cut.”
While she continued praying in the Lord’s presence, Eli watched her mouth. Hannah was praying silently, and though her lips were moving, her voice could not be heard. Eli thought she was drunk and said to her, “How long are you going to be drunk? Get rid of your wine!”
“No, my lord,” Hannah replied. “I am a woman with a broken heart. I haven’t had any wine or beer; I’ve been pouring out my heart before the Lord. Don’t think of me as a wicked woman; I’ve been praying from the depth of my anguish and resentment.”
Eli responded, “Go in peace, and may the God of Israel grant the request you’ve made of him.”
“May your servant find favor with you,” she replied. Then Hannah went on her way; she ate and no longer looked despondent.
1 Samuel 1:9-18 (CSB)
Hannah was in anguish; she was a woman who was without — without child, without hope, without an answer to her insistent prayers. Her pain was so deep her prayers came out silent through moving lips. Tears were her offering at the temple, and her heart was laid bare and open before the Lord.
Perhaps, like Hannah, you are crying out to God in the quiet corner of your room. Perhaps you’re sitting in church service, aching and with no strength to sing. Perhaps you’re shattered, unable to see what is to come, and you wonder when God will finally hear and answer your prayers.
God does hear you, and He sees you and holds all your tears. He understands every groan of your spirit and every ache of your heart.
May His peace fill in the chasms that echo with your pain, and may you find rest in the arms of a God who loves you and hears your prayers.
How can we pray for you?
Here at (in)courage, one of our greatest privileges is turning to God together in prayer. Let’s hold space for one another in prayer, so leave a prayer request in the comments and then pray for the person who commented before you.
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