Who Was She? Hannah – The Enemy’s Provoking Has A Time Limit

She felt like a failure.

She felt purposeless.

Provoked and tormented by her enemy day after, year after year, month after month…baby after baby, her enemy pushed her, harassed her, irritated her. Peninnah may have used every opportunity to provoke Hannah especially at the yearly sacrifice! Mocking her and treating her mean with ill contempt Peninnah, pointed out that Hannah was the problem. Also, since it was expected for women to have children, the others in the community may have looked at her scornfully, talked about her, or laughed at her too.

Yes she must be the problem, not her husband, Elqanah. He was fruitful through Peninnah and she was not.

Though she was loved and favored by him, she was powerless to do anything to change her barrenness. No doubt she had tried every remedy known to the women she knew, still nothing worked. What was wrong with her? What had she done wrong? Did she have some sin in her heart that caused the problem? Why after so many years, was she still unable to do what every woman at that time desired to do, be a mother?

One year when they went to Shiyloh, to sacrifice and to worship YAHUAH TSEVA’OT, she could take no more. She was beyond desperation. She was despondent and vexed to the point that she stopped eating-her sorrow could no longer be concealed. Fleeing she went to the Temple and there she wept profusely. Her pain so heavy and tears in bitterness, she appeared to be in a state of drunkenness to the High Priest, Eli. As she cried out to YAHUAH TSEVA’OT she said:

When Eli realized that this woman was not drunk but rather pouring out her heavy heart, he blessed her. In her prayer and Eli’s blessing, the enemy’s provoking had lots its power. She returned no longer in sorrow but full of strength and joy. After so many years of praying, she was finally heard.

A song comes to mind by Rita Springer called Defender when I read this, the lyrics are:

You go before I know
That You’ve gone to win my war
You come back with the head of my enemy
You come back and You call it my victory

You go before I know
That You’ve gone to win my war
Your love becomes my greatest defense
It leads me from the dry wilderness

All I did was praise
All I did was worship
All I did was bow down
All I did was stay still

You have saved me
So much better Your way
Hallelujah, great Defender
So much better Your way

You know before I do
Where my heart can seek to find Your truth
Your mercy is the shade I’m living in
You restore my faith and hope again

All I did was praise
All I did was worship
All I did was bow down
All I did was stay still

Sometimes there is nothing we can do but worship. We cannot change the circumstances or situations. We’ve done all that we can do. We are at the end of our rope. We are broken and in despair.

I know of a woman who was married to an abusive, adulterating man, who continually provoked her to anger day after day. Sometimes he would say he was sorry but nothing changed. The woman tried to wait, tried to hope, tried to believe he would change and things only got worse. Until one day, while praying she received her answer and a year later the way was made for her to start over. During the waiting time, nothing the man did or said, bothered her again-the enemy’s provoking had lost its power.

Today, woman of YAHUAH, you may be experiencing the enemy’s provoking in your life. Maybe it is in a work situation, a sickness that is unrelenting, a relationship that is driving you crazy, even hoping for a child that is wayward or unborn -year after year you have hoped and you have prayed yet nothing has changed. It may seem like the enemy has the upper hand in your life, but know that YAHUAH has a perfect time. Hannah’s barrenness was not caused by her. It was caused by YAHUAH for His purpose and in His time, the barrenness was turned around, just as it was for Sarah and Rachel.

Woman, don’t stop crying out. Don’t stop praying. One day, YAHUAH may speak through someone:

“Go in peace: and the Elohim of Yisra’el grant you your petition that you have asked of Him.” 1 Shemu’el 1:17

For even more encouragement, listen to the previous week’s Sabbath Message of Hope called

The Broken Woman and also this week’s current Message of Hope called Broken for HIS Glory.

This post is based is based off the book of 1 Shemu’el chapter 1. While reading Jill Eilleen Smith’s book about Hannah called A Passionate Hope, I saw how provoked Hannah may have been. Though the book is a fictional account it accurately follows the scripture story and has some further things to consider such as the other things that were going on during this time in history. The sons Eli were corrupt and were polluting the temple while Eli did nothing. Another aspect of the story was how hard it may have been for Elqanah and Hannah to fulfill the vow in giving Shemu’el back to YAHUAH. Furthermore, I saw in the book, that sometimes we may have to help our enemy and that they both shared the same type of despair.

Who Was She? Hannah: It Was Time

We all know the story of Hannah very well (found in 1 Shemu’el (Samuel) 1:2-2:21) , however today I’m sharing my own Hannah story. My story is a bit different because I was not barren (at that time we had three daughters and one son) and nor was I being tormented by someone else for that barrenness.

One day when, our first born son was about 9 months old, I took him and his sisters to the park. While I was swinging him on a swing, another mother came with two boys both under 4 years old. I observed how the boys interacted with each other and I said in my heart:

“YAHUAH, I don’t want another child right now. But I see that our son needs a brother. So if it is in Your will, please allow us to have another son.”

At that time, I didn’t want to have any more children. Our first born son had WPW w/ SVT, so I was tired of the challenges it brought as well as the challenges of pregnancy. With him, I had multiple issues which included a Near Death Experience and I had no desire to go through that again. Lastly, my husband and I, due to all the stresses weren’t on the best of terms.

Still I prayed. Setting my fears and desires aside, I prayed.

The next month, I was pregnant. Months later we learned that this baby was a boy!!!

All of our children are unique, with special callings. This last born son, however, has a call on his life. We don’t know what it is and how YAHUAH will use him but I am telling you, this boy surprises us all the time.

Many times in the mornings, after I do our scripture reading and ask the kids what they learned from what they heard, he applies the word accurately in his responses. Two years ago, when I started having Girl Time with our daughters, he made me a card telling me “thank you for blessing my sisters” – he was only 4 years old!

Weeks can pass between the times when we have focused on one scripture topic and have moved on to the next, but then he will apply something in the past to the present correctly! Like Shemu’el (Samuel) in the bible, we know that he hears YAHUAH and that YAHUAH hears him.

Like Hannah, YAHUAH had a time for Shemu’el and for each of us, He has a time for everything.