Hannah’s first morning sickness

This writing was inspired by Francine Rivers’ book “SONS of ENCOURAGEMENT”, it has given me a deeper insight to understanding God’s voice and it would be a treasonous sin if I did not acknowledge that fact.

Hannah was a woman in a dilemma: loved dearly by her husband but she could not bear children for the Lord had closed her womb (1st Samuel 1v5b). I am convinced that she was Elkanah’s love of the heart but since a man had to preserve his name a second woman (Peninah) was brought in to produce the children and boy did she produce!!

I am somehow convinced that if the issue had stopped with the production of children there would not have been much anguish but as with most bigamist homes, pain was inevitable. The good book speaks of her rival provoking her in order to irritate her (1st Samuel 1vs6-7). This went on every year and even distracted her from her annual spiritual sojourn.

I am somehow convinced that Peninah conceived as many times as she could (probably every year) so as to spite her rival. I imagine Hannah’s feeble attempts to send one of Peninah’s children to bring her water and the riposte that would follow couched along lines that were simply telling her to give birth to her own children who would run her errands. More pain. The pain was so much that Hannah would always be weeping and refusing to eat. Even the husband’s effort to commiserate with her did not help.

I am not sure what happened that year when the family went on their annual pilgrimage to Shiloh. Maybe the rival overstepped her taunts; maybe the rival fell pregnant immediately after giving birth, whatever happened, it triggered in Hannah a desire to offload to the Lord.

Finally it dawned to her that if the Lord had closed her womb then the only person to contend with was the Lord and not misdirected tears and refusing to eat delicious meals. It dawned to her that the source who could plug the river of pain was the Lord and like a drunken woman she offloaded her burden to the right place and source- the Lord.

She stopped concentrating on the pain the rival was giving her. She stopped listening to the henpecked husband’s endearments which were hollow as they did not stop him from siring more children with the pain giving Peninah. She made a vow to the Lord, she did not want a number of children equal to her rival, she did not want a child as a relic, and all she wanted was a child of remembrance who she vowed to dedicate unto the Lord.

Having come to the right source , having closed the receptacles that were allowing her rival’s pain into her life , having stopped shedding useless tears- she found the right source- she unloaded to God with a vow and went back home with a lesser burden.

Because she did not allow the pain to floor her anymore I am convinced she was able to concentrate on important issues that ply the link between a man and a woman. I am convinced that because she now had a pleasant aura around her (she was now eating and smiling more frequently) Brother Elkanah found himself in her tent more frequently!! The man had justification: he had rediscovered the vein of love that had initially attracted him to Hannah.

I am convinced that after one of the tent visitations Hannah woke up feeling queasy. Despite an effort to hold it down she woke up with a start and rushed out of the tent toward the ablutions but she did not reach them as her stomach heaved in a massive manner and she threw up in a massive trumpet. The unburdened woman just had had her first morning sickness!! Now the rival was quiet, she had no experience she had undergone that Hannah was not going to taste. Gone was the pain, gone was the scorn, gone was the acidic tone of voice for God had remembered Hannah.

So whatever Peninah situation we find ourselves in our focus should not be on her scorn and the children she spawns every year to spite our moment of infertility. Our focus should not be on shedding tears and starving ourselves. Our focus should be on taking our burdens to the only capable hands. Our focus should be unloading at the right platform and you have the greatest assurance the morning sickness will come!

Tomorrow, as the sun rises, count your Peninahs and laugh at them for their pain will not hurt anymore as you now know where to take your burdens.

my monologues (1)

Dear God,

This is not a prayer (for I fear that the answers to some questions might invoke your wrath). The teachers say when we pray we talk to you. I am not sure whether we talk to you or with you but whatever it is, the talk involves you dear God.

But I digress; I meant to indicate that these are my mumblings as I live this life. These are things that run through my mind everyday but I can’t pray them aloud or talk about them to anyone so I opt to talk to myself in a monologue that can’t be directed to you dear God straight but which I know you hear after all.

To start with, dear God thank you for allowing me to win my first race. My biology teacher says there were a million of us battling and expending energy in an uphill swim in an environment that can be likened to be acidic. And I won.

Secondly thank you for making me take the right direction, the same teacher says I could have swum up the wrong tube to die a disappointed sperm but that did not happen because I happened to be steered in the correct direction. I will not assume any credit for this for I do not know how I did it.

Thirdly thank you for allowing me to hit bull’s eye and be accepted as the sperm that fertilized the egg. In all this I had no input so I can only deduce that it was your unction dear God that carried me through.

Fourthly thank you for allowing me to fully develop and to see the light of the earth. This was by no means a feat arising from my efforts. It was not by my effort that my father did not disown me ( may you bless his soul), it was not by my means that I was not still-born, it was not by my power that my mother never thought to terminate my existence. It was not my input in all these steps that carried me through, so I can safely deduce dear God that it was You who oversaw all this.

So dear God these monologues are coming from a product existing because of your will. They come from a victor who won his first race and has reason to believe that all race s are possible to be run if not won.  Incidentally my name means victor when translated and I know that I owe all my victories to your guiding hand. I won my first race because of you God, millions others came second, millions others swam up the wrong way. I was a victor from the start and I will monologue in an effort to keep the path of victory which I have come to realize I cannot undertake without you dear God. I thus pray your indulgence as I talk alone in your presence my Father.

Your faithful son,

The seed that won the race

 

 

Let this cup pass my father

Faced with the ultimate understanding of the weight upon Him, the Lord made this declaration. In it was the acknowledgement that the cost of the situation was taxing His handling capacities. On Him lay the fate of nations; He was the determinant factor to what our state of relations with God was going to be.

The price was also beyond Him, it taxed His deity to the extent that He had to let the Father know. The Father had to understand that as much as the Son had come on His own volition, the weight of what He had to undergo in order to salvage the world was overwhelming  Him to the point that the ultimate decision had to come from the Father and hence ‘—- not my will—‘.

The cup of course was not taken away. The agony was not deferred or cancelled. The good book states that He was in agony of pain to the extent of sweating drops that were like blood (Luke 22v44). The pain could not be taken away because it was part of the course that was to birth universal redemption. The cup could not be taken away because a lot hanged (no pun intended) on the cup running its course. The cup was the cost of keeping a promise.

The consolation seen is the angel dispatched from the heavens to strengthen Him (v43). There was no postponement, no alteration of the terms and no reduction of the cup’s volume, no promise to delay or rethink. The strength was to boost the resolve and refocus Him at the business at hand, that is the Cross and for sure, He arose from there and walked the path of the cup and the rest is history.

Many cups portend us this day, cups that call to our deeper recesses and drain our innermost being. Many cups stand at our doors to breakthroughs. At times we have run away from handling the taxing tasks, pain, sacrifices in the hope of short-circuiting our way to achievement only to discover that we fooled none but ourselves.

Many of us commit to promises but refuse to drink the cup when the time to deliver comes. A commitment will only come to fruition when one puts their hand on the plough and they till the land to produce the promise. This calls for agony, sweat, labour, pain, sacrifice, determination and courage. When the Saviour went through all these, all His abilities and senses were taxed beyond His ability to bear but the strength that kept Him going was the result of His suffering (salvation for mankind)

What cups face you today? What sweat runs down your face today? What pain wears you down today? Whatever it is, do not drop the cup or spill the contents, you are a step closer to fulfilling the pledge. One more painful step, one more painful trudge, one more taxing resolve and the breakthrough will flow. Hold on.

As the sun rises tomorrow, face the cup, recall the promise, defy your screaming nerves and press on toward the agreed goal and say ‘— yet I want your will to be done, not mine—‘Luke 22v42b.