She was deeply distressed and prayed to the LORD and wept bitterly. And she vowed a vow and said, “O LORD of hosts, if you will indeed look on the affliction of your servant and remember me and not forget your servant, but will give your servant a son, then I will give him to the LORD all the days of his life, and no razor shall touch his head.” Hannah was speaking in her heart” “I have been pouring out my soul before the LORD.” 1 Samuel 1: 10-11, 13, 15 (ESV)
This is one of the passages included in my prayer folder for Lent. As I read it, I realized a connection between how Hannah prayed and what God told the people at the dedication of the Temple. (2 Chronicles 7:14)
Hannah humbled herself. She was not afraid to shed tears. (v.10) She sought God’s face. She prayed from her heart. (v. 13) She more than likely confessed what was on her heart what she felt about the way Peninnah treated her. She poured her soul before the LORD. (v. 15)
God answered her prayer. Hannah kept her vow. The LORD then rewarded her by giving her three sons and two daughters. (1 Samuel 2; 21)
Since I made this discovery, I have thought about my prayer habits. I sometimes do what some people call, “pray on the run.” When I have something I think more pressing going on. But, I realize my need to focus on God and let the other activity wait a bit. Sentence prayers are nice but there are times when I need to spend quantity time with God. I am not looking for the same kind of reward from God. I want what God has in mind for me, nothing more, and nothing less.