Do You Pray Like This?
“And she vowed a vow, and said, O LORD of hosts, if thou wilt indeed look on the affliction of thine handmaid, and remember me, and not forget thine handmaid, but wilt give unto thine handmaid a man child, then I will give him unto the LORD all the days of his life, and there shall no razor come upon his head.” 1 Samuel 1:11
“Therefore also I have lent him to the LORD; as long as he liveth he shall be lent to the LORD.” 1 Samuel 1:28
When Hannah poured out her heart to the Lord over how devastated she was that she had been unable to bear children, she did something as she prayed to Him for a child that I believe would be life-changing for us all if we chose to pray – and act – as she did.
Hannah told the Lord that if He answered her prayer by giving her the ability to have a child, she would dedicate that child to Him for life. This wasn’t any ordinary modern day baby dedication with a lot of pomp and circumstances, fanfare, oohs and ah’s from those watching, little baby outfits, sweet kisses, i.e. traditions of modern churches and families. She literally promised God she would give up her child to Him if she had one. She meant every word she said. For when her son Samuel was born, rather than keep him in her care to enjoy raising him like any other ordinary parent would do with a child, particularly a miracle child after being for so long unable to bear children, she handed him over to God to serve Him. Samuel became a prophet who has two Bible books bearing his name.
I don’t know about you who are reading this now, but I am incredibly convicted at how selfish my prayers have so often been through the years. Even when I prayed for outcomes I believe the Lord would want, like the marriage I once had to be healed, my ex-husband to be delivered from addiction, personal healing, etc., how often did I pray such prayers for my own selfish gain rather than for service to and for the glory of the Lord?
The more I have come to know the Lord, the more I spend time with Him as I seek His face and delve into His Word, the deeper my relationship grows with Him, the more I love and revere and honor Him, the more my prayers are changing. Increasingly, I am learning to pray like Hannah did – that the Lord would be glorified. My greatest continual prayer now is for this world to repent, believe in Christ as Lord, and turn to God and His ways forever. Oh, that we would all dedicate ourselves and that which and whom the Lord so kindly and mercifully blesses us with by placing in our care, or places on our hearts for the purpose of prayer, that we would all bow down before His feet and dedicate all to Him with love and adoration and rejoice in His love forevermore!