Last night in our Yorkie Men’s group we were studying 1 Samuel. It’s a striking passage for all sorts of reasons; polygamy, apostasy, where sin leads, Elkanah’s husbanding fail. But what struck me most last night was the passion and sheer broken heartedness that led Hannah to pray.
Too often we get distracted by wondering was Hannah right to make her vow, was she bargaining with God, treating God as a divine vending machine? When what we ought to be asking is when did I last pray with a broken heart, when has prayer been as simple, honest and God honouring as pouring out our heart to God? When did we pray from the depth of our anguish and resentment?
Hannah gives us a model of real prayer. Prayer that is all in. Prayer that longs and is the result of seeing and experiencing again and again the brokenness of the world and taking that pain and brokenness to God. When did I last pray like this? What breaks my heart in such a way that I pray like this? Or has the spirit of the age of apathy infused my heart and short circuited my prayers?