"FOR THIS CHILD I PRAYED"

One of the most beautiful stories in the Old Testament is that of Hannah, told in the first chapter of I Samuel. At that time the Israelites believed a childless wife to be under the reproach of Jehovah, and it seems clear that Hannah earnestly desired to be freed from this reproach. Her longing for God's approval may have been stronger even than her natural wish for a son, as is indicated by the fact that she was willing to give up the child, the token of this approval, to the service of God for the whole of his life, saying to Eli (I Sam. 1:27, 28), "For this child I prayed; and the Lord hath given me my petition which I asked of him: therefore also I have lent him to the Lord."

To many this would seem no small sacrifice. Samuel must have been very young, perhaps at a most attractive stage of childhood, when Hannah took him to the temple and left him in the care of Eli, thereafter to see him only once a year. Yet such were her love and trust that she was able to leave him with rejoicing, and the story gives no indication that the child was ever unhappy or appeared to feel the loss of her care.

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"THOU GOD SEEST ME"
June 12, 1948
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