Sunday, November 13, 2005

Untitled--feeling pensive

I'm giving you my heart
All that is within
Lay it all down
For the sake of you my king
I'm giving you my dreams
Laying down my rights
I'm giving up my pride
For the promise of new life

And I surrender
All to you
All to you

I'm singing you this song
Waiting at the cross
And all the world holds dear
Count it all as loss
The sake of knowing you
Glory of your name
Know the lasting joy
Even sharing in your pain

And I surrender
All to you
All to you

We sang this song a couple of times at pRAISE at concordia. Oh how i miss pRAISE and the fellowship and the worship there. I really think I truly understood what Christian community was during pRAISE and during the Bible study that I went to my freshman and sophomore year. God prepared me in ways i don't understand and for a future I can't see during those events.

I think that God is trying to get my attention and has been for the past couple of weeks and He hasn't been terribly subtle. How, you ask? Well, I'll tell you. :) In the past two weeks I have used the story of Hannah as an example for prayer in two bible studies (once my choice, once not my choice), led a chapel message on it, heard it in confirmation on Wednesday night and am teaching the story to the 4-6th grade religion class on Tuesday. Crazy. God couldn't be more obvious if he was holding up a flashing sign that said "Hannah Louise I'm talking to you". So, the Hannah of the bible has always been a role model for me (and not just because she has a great name) but because of her amazing story. And for those of you that haven't heard the story in a while, I'll recap it for you and then I'll get back to the song up there. I promise :).

So hannah's married to this guy and he has another wife. The other wife Peninnah (your guess on pronunciation is as good as mine) has kids, which is great, but Hannah can't have kids... but her husband loves her more. Every year they all go to the temple and after the sacrifice they have a big meal. Hannah's husband gives her a double portion of the food b/c he loves her so much and b/c she can't have children. Well this ticks Peninnnah off so she pokes and pokes at Hannah and makes her cry and she has no appetite. Then... quoted from the message version,

" 8Her husband Elkanah said, "Oh, Hannah, why are you crying? Why aren't you eating? And why are you so upset? Am I not of more worth to you than ten sons?"
9So Hannah ate. Then she pulled herself together, slipped away quietly, and entered the sanctuary. The priest Eli was on duty at the entrance to GOD's Temple in the customary seat. 10Crushed in soul, Hannah prayed to GOD and cried and cried--inconsolably. 11Then she made a vow:
Oh, GOD-of-the-Angel-Armies,
If you'll take a good, hard look at my pain,
If you'll quit neglecting me and go into action for me
By giving me a son,
I'll give him completely, unreservedly to you.
I'll set him apart for a life of holy discipline."

As she is praying, the priest eli comes up and sees her weeping and praying and thinks she's drunk. When he confronts her, she says that she is not drunk, she is pouring her soul to the Lord. Eli, touched by her honesty blesses her and says "may God give you what you ask for" and sends her off in peace.

Not long later, Hannah becomes pregnant and she keeps her promise and brings young Samuel to the temple so he may begin his service. Samuel may have only been 2 or 3 years old!

Moral of the story and moral for my life? Hannah wasn't afraid to ask God for what she truly wanted. However, it doesn't stop there. Not only is Hannah not afraid to ask for her heart's desire, she's unafraid to give it back to God. Can you imagine. This child she is asking for is not only her "first fruit" (as abel offered in Genesis) but may very well be her only. Solamente. yet she makes the offer to God and she keeps her bargain.

Moral for my life? I think that God is like Elkanah, like a faithful loving husband giving me double portions of a feast I cannot eat, because I am looking at what I do not have and now He is saying to me " why are you so upset? Am I not of more worth to you than your selfish desires?"

The answer should be yes, but this willful child gets lost in the things I think i need and the things I think I want but God is reminding me that He should be all I want, all I need. That's where the song comes in. I want to surrender. I want to give God my dreams and lay down the rights I have to this life and let him work through them and mold them so that they match his own. But I have to be willing to surrender. Am I?

I mentioned two blogs ago that I need a recommitment and I think this not so subtle message from God is exactly what I need.


Dutch Not German said...

I love that story, and I love how you relate it to life. I also think it's interesting that as I read just the story, I came up with a totally different analysis. We can talk about it later, but it still shocks me when God speaks different things through the same words.