1 Samuel 2:18-21
Acts 15:1-5, 22-35
Eli would bless Elkanah and his wife: “May the LORD give you children by this woman in place of the one she has given to the LORD.” Then they would go home. The LORD paid attention to Hannah’s need, and she conceived and gave birth to three sons and two daughters. Meanwhile, the boy Samuel grew up in the presence of the LORD. 1 Samuel 2:20-21 (CSB)
God’s blessings flow through open hands not clenched fists.
After receiving her heart’s desire, Hannah dedicated Samuel to be raised in the service of Yahweh under Eli. She could have renigged on her vow to God, but she didn’t. She could’ve clenched her fist on God’s blessing, but that would have stopped the flow of favor on her life.
She followed through with great faithfulness to her commitment. Of course, her heart ached, as any mother’ heart would, for most of the year when she was away from her little “Sammy.” Year after year she watched him grow up from a distance. However, God soothed her heart by blessing her with more children.
God’s says, “Give, and it shall be given to you…” (Luke 6:38). God’s blessings flow through open hands not clenched fists. For example, the same waters that collect in the Dead Sea once flowed through the Sea of Galilee. The ecosystems of the two bodies of water are vastly different. One is teeming with life, the other cannot support life. The difference is that the Sea of Galilee has an inlet and an outlet, but the Dead Sea only holds water. As the Dea Sea attempts to hoard all the waters received, evaporation steals her liquid leaving just the salt behind. The salinity increases stifling the opportunity for life. And so it is with those that tightly grip things and refuse to return it to God’s service.
What are you holding on to that God has called for? Of course, many immediately think of finances, but that is not the only area God desires to bless you. We can hold on to relationships, aspirations, or some other thing. Again, God’s blessings flow through open hands not clenched fists. Give it to God and watch his favor flow over your life.
Suggestion for Prayer
Thank for His blessing in your life and ask how you can use them to serve Him.
Reflection on Previous Sunday’s Reading
1 Samuel 3:1-10[11-10]
2 Corinthians 4:5-12
The “In the Word Together” (ITWT) blog series on www.kevinwbounds.com is a systematic approach to reading and reflecting on the Holy Scriptures in a community. To learn more about its origins click here. ITWT utilizes the structure provided by the Revised Common Lectionary.
Revised Common Lectionary, Copyright © 1992 Consultation on Common Texts, admin Augsburg Fortress. Used by permission.
Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are taken from the Christian Standard Bible®, Copyright © 2017 by Holman Bible Publishers. Used by permission. Christian Standard Bible® and CSB® are federally registered trademarks of Holman Bible Publishers.
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