By: Dev Menon
Coming back from the Vaughan Roberts conference…. he did a sample sermon for us on 1 Samuel 1-2.
Here’s a point, though he didn’t really focus on it, it struck me at the time:
1 Samuel 2:1 “My heart exults in the LORD; my strength is exalted in the LORD. My mouth derides my enemies, because I rejoice in your salvation.”
Hannah is upset with Peninnah (her enemy), who provokes her for not having children, despite the fact that Hannah is deeply loved by her husband.
God comes to Hannah in her personal sorrow, and gives her what she really desires.
Yet in her ‘victory song’, it is not:
1. Thanks God, see you later.
2. Thanks God, I owe you one.
But rather, her song is very similar to 2 other songs – the victory song of Moses in Exodus 15 and also the Magnificat by Mary in Luke 1 at the promise of the birth of King Jesus.
Hannah, although obsessed with her personal problem, is now brought to look forward to God’s people and God’s plan as a whole – she longs for Christ to make all things right. Her prayer is not really about Peninnah at all!? And amazingly – she can even give up what she really desired – Samuel is returned to God.
Her answer is:
3. Thanks God, please send Jesus to save your people!
I wonder if we can learn to be like that – we need to be real about our obsessions with God, and ask Him for an answer, but if He should grant them, our response should be a desire to see Jesus, and to serve His people, seeing that there is a ‘greater salvation’ than just the small problem we once had.
God invites us through His Son, to be bigger than just self-obsessed – to be part of a new family, concerned about cosmic things. How could we ever achieve our full potential, if we are merely concerned about what school to go to and what job to get? Yet despite our selfishness, He will meet us in our minor concerns to draw us closer to His magnificent Self, as we see what we have received through Christ, and return even that – to Him.
What is your ‘big picture’?