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A Study in The Life of Samuel:
"Ministering in the Middle of Your Mishap"
I Samuel 1:1-5;10-13; 20; 27-28
Rev. Darryl K. Fields
August 12, 2012
Scripture Text- I Samuel 1:1-5 KJV-CIT: Hannah ministered to God in the middle of her maternal mishap. MOJ: Consecrative At the completion of the sermon the church will know we serve God even when times are severe.
Specific Enabling Objectives
1. The church will recognize MISHAPS happen.
2. The church will value being in the MIDDLE of God’s happenings.
3. The church will commit to staying out of the MARGINS and in the middle of God’s will.
There is something about being in the middle. The middle can bring out the best and most often the worst in us. For example, Middle School is often a time of difficultly and adjustment for adolescent. Even being Middle aged is time when some people have what some call a “mid-life crisis.” Or maybe you are just the middle child born to your parents. So, they assigned you disorder called “middle child syndrome.” (Am I right about it?) It can be hard to be in the middle of somethings. The middle is often a time trying and testing. The “middle” points to having as much behind you as you have before you. The middle will make some people pessimistic and others optimist. A cup filled to the mid point will lead some to it is half full while others say the cup is half empty. And such is the case of the modern day Church. We are in the Middle of a recession, depression and if there is honest confession we will admit some church folks will stop “Ministering in the Middle of a Mishap.”
I don’t want to jump into the middle of the text, but I do believe some of us are missing chances to “Minister in the Middle of our Mishaps.” Elkanah’s wife Hannah was in a the middle of a mishap. According to verse 5 she was barren and in the middle of that she was burdened according to verse 8. There are barren and burdened folks around us today. And some of them go to church to provoke and not to praise. I’m in the text because Pininnah according to verses 6-7 “provoked” Hannah “to make her fret.” This doesn’t happen at Union, but some folks show up to church to cause “fret” and not to fellowship. That’s why the Psalmist David reminds us, “Fret not thyself because of evildoers, neither be thou envious against the workers of iniquity.” (Psalm37:1) They may want fret, but lets fellowship! They may even provoke, but we are going to praise.
Christians have been presented the profession of ministering in mishaps. Ministering is your service to God. The Bible say, “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice...” (Romans 12:1) That you present your bodies... You can’t pre-sent what your not present for. The text says in verse 3 that Elkanah “went up...yearly to worship.” Elkanah went up regularly in worship and sacrifice. To minister to God in accordance with the Exodus instruction on the Jewish feast. In other words, Elkanah was present to pre-sent. Matter fact, tell your neighbor, “you got to be present to pre-sent.” When it was time to present Elkanah was present and accounted for. Elkanah was a minister to his family and foremost to God. Verses 4 & 5 say he gave “portions” to his wives and children. Elkanah in today’s lingo, “broke his peeps off a little something.” He blessed them materially and spiritually. We need more Elknah’s. He did not miss the chance to Minister because of a Mishap.
Mishap is short for mis-happening. Mishaps are those things in life that happen that you would rather miss. Car broke down; kids in trouble; bills unpaid; layoffs; shutdowns and shut offs...those are mishaps. Let me parenthetically say that some mishaps you can miss if we just recognize somethings are going to happen. You lose your check at the casino! Some stuff is going to happen. Repossessions are going to happen; shut offs are going to happen. (Amen somebody) Somethings are going to happen. Some of us misappropriations is mishap when already know what’s going to happen.
Things happen and some are mishaps. But, nothing ever happens that God misses. The Bible says, “Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep.” (Psalm 121:4) It maybe a mishap to you, but nothing happens that God misses. Nothing happens that is such a mishap that God can’t turn mishap into a miracle. Does anybody in this house of God believe God can turn Mishaps into Miracles. And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to [his] purpose. (Romans 8:28) God can turn a mishap into a miracle. That’s a word of encouragement for some in the middle of a mishap, right now. Maybe, you’re in the middle of a messed up marriage. God can turn a mishap into a miracle. Or you struggling with a situation. God can turn a mishap into a miracle. Maybe you can’t see Christ in your circumstance. God can turn a mishap into a miracle. Do you believe that? You maybe in the middle of a mishap, but turn your mishap into a miracle. The Bible says, “For with God nothing shall be impossible.” (Luke 1:37) With all the mess and mishaps in the world Christians can’t go MIA (Missing In Action) when it is time to minister. We are called to “Minister in the Middle of Mishaps.”
Hannah is teaching us how to manage the mishaps that are in the middle of our lives.
Don’t Mess Up Because of A Mishap. (Vs. 13)
Mishaps mess a bunch of us up! Hannah manages one mishap after another with the precision of a master. Look at verse 13. Hannah is at the shrine at Shiloh praying, pouring out her heart to the point her voice was not heard. I want you to see this she is hurt. She got evil doers trying fret her! She got folks that supposed to praisers and even a priest now provoking her. But, there’s something about practicing praisers, who can get a prayer through. The text says, “Eli thought she had been drunken.” Hannah was just pouring out her soul. Now, she has a mishap with the minister of God! She been dealing with burden of barreness. And with all that she still doesn’t mess up! Can I tell you why? Because she knows the same God that closed her womb, created her womb and that same God can allow a child to come her womb. You’ll missing it! You got to look at verse 5 to really get this. Her womb is messed up, but she knows what’s messed up God can fix up! Somebody, drug they self to this church today messed up because the middle of what they think is a sociological problem (you think your mishap is because you are black). You may even think your messed up is because economically (you’re poor). Or is it because you biologically you are predisposed to health issues. But, I stopped by to tell some self loathing folks all you’re problems are not sociological, economic or even biological in nature. I’m black so I might well say it! A lot of our problem in the black community is theological. I don’t mean we don’t read and profess a belief in God’s Word. I mean our mishap in our community is we profess and don’t practice what we profess. Our problem as black folks is we are spiritually barren because we won’t do what we know God’s Word says. Alright, you’ll mad now! You’ll gone shut me down like we Bill Cosby when told truth us only caring about tennis shoes and rims! And because we won’t listen we in the middle of a mess with our kids, our schools and our churches. Alright, I’m in the text because verse 5 says, “but the Lord shut hers womb.‘ That is not a biological problem. That’s a theological problem. That’s a God problem. And the black community is barren of businesses, barren of entrepreneurs, barren of resources, barren of Godly mentors because we profess one thing practice another. We need some people who will Minister in the Middle of a Mishap. If we are going to turn this thing around and not allow mishap to mess us up we got to start ministering.
Don’t Give Up in the Middle of Your Miracle.
Hannah was not a middle of the road church member. Middle of the road church members can take worship or leave it. Middle of the road church members waiver between worry and worship. Middle of the road church members get mad and go Missing In Action for a year. Hannah would not give up on the possibility of a miracle. That’s why she went back year after year. Peninnah was poking fun of her, but she persisted. Eli said she was drunk, but she didn’t dodge the source of her deliverance. Some folks are going to bust hell wide open because they let a pastor, preacher or teacher’s personality keep them from the deliver. Some of need us need to learn it is not all about the preaching personality, but it is all power of God to deliver thru the personality He chooses. Don’t give up in the middle of your miracle. God is trying to deliver you! Hanna refused to give in the middle of mishap. She knew there was a miracle is stay close to the Church. She knew the shrine at Shiloh was her spiritual stronghold. So, she went to the shrine in sadness. She went to her worship spot even while she wept. She went to her place of prayer even while she was in pain. She didn’t stay home went it looked helpless. Hannah held on when it was hard! She Ministered in the Midst of her Mishap and God worked a miracle in her life and in the life of Israel when the Prophet, Priest, Judge and Intercessor named Samuel was born.
Don’t Allow A Mishap to Keep You in the Margins.
When I was young I would get my big chief tablet and that fat boy pencil and I like to write in the margins. As got to school the teacher began to correct me. She would say, “Darryl, don’t write in the margins! Write in the middle!” Can I make that live for you? Come some of us need to stop leaving in the margins and get the middle of God’s will for our lives. Hanna wouldn’t let life mishaps move her into the margins. Hannah was barren and burdened. So, she began to bargain with God. Some theologians don’t like the ideal that Hanna bargained with God when she said, “I will give (child) unto the Lord all the days of his life...” But, if the truth be told we have all bargained with God when we should have just believed. Some those bargains are still ringing in our ears...
Lord, if you just... let the car start I’ll never miss church again.
Lord, if you stop this.... I will...
Lord, when you... I will...
Well, I really don’t want to debate bargaining with God or just believing God. But, I will tell you prayer works! The truth is wether your bargaining with God or just believing God, He can and will bless you.
Prayer works! Dialogue with Divinity Works!
I said, “prayer works!” A hook up with the Holy! I’m telling you it works!
That’s right prayer works. When you done shedding tears and slinging snot. Trying praying about it! It worked for Hanna and it work on you, if not for you!
Prayer works... A Consecrative conversation! Prayer works! That’s why the hymnologist said,
“Now let us have a little talk with Jesus
When you prayed about I learned God will help you be about it!
You would be messed up by every mishap! Pray about it!
You wont give up in the Middle of you miracle! Pray about it!
Oh when you’ve prayed about it your Mishaps won’t move you into the margins...
The Art of the follow Thru... Hanna and Jesus!
Sermon text with italics and bold and John 3:16 and v. 20.
Text with an outline.
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