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A Woman of Prayer

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I Samuel 1

I.    Hannah’s problem

      A.  It was consistent with God’s plan  vv. 5,6  (Job 2:10; Phil.3:10; I Pet. 4:19; Rom. 8:28)

      B. It was complicated by great provocation  v. 6  (Mt. 4:1)

      C.  It was creating genuine pain  v. 7  (Lk. 22:41-44; Isa.53:10; II Cor. 4:8-11)

II.  Hannah’s portion

      A.  It was generous  v. 5a

      B.  It was genuine  v. 5b

      C.  It was grievous  vv. 7,8

            1.  It could have stirred her enemy  v. 7        

            2.  It could not satisfy her emptiness  v. 8

                 Sometimes the very best that can be done by sincere,            well-meaning people is not enough.  If it were, we               wouldn’t learn to need and cry out to God.         

III. Hannah’s prayer   

      A.  It was private  vv. 9,12,13  (Mt. 6:6)

      B.  It was painful  vv. 10,16  (I Pet. 5:7)

      C.  It was promissory  v. 11  (Deut. 23:21-22)

      D.  It was punished  v. 14

            Sometimes the very people whom you think would               encourage and support are the ones who rebuke.

      E.  It was productive  vv. 18,19

            In both the old and new testaments, the outward work of    the ministry is committed mainly to men.  This may cause        women to wonder how they can be used.  Hannah provides             a wonderful answer to that question.  Though she could not         serve in the temple, she, through her prayer, gave Israel one             of the greatest servants the temple ever knew.  Used of God          from a child, Samuel served with Eli, providing a stark and      refreshing contrast to the vile and wicked ministry of his      own sons.  He went on to be the first of a line of mighty             prophets who warned Israel of coming judgment if they did            not repent.  God even used Samuel after his death to speak          to the hardening heart of Saul.  May God give us women

of prayer like Hannah in the church today!

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