1 Samuel 1:22
But Hannah went not up; for she said unto her husband, I will not go up until the child be weaned, and then I will bring him, that he may appear before the LORD, and there abide for ever.
Hannah made a promise. If God would give her a baby boy, she would give him back to God. At this point she had no children. Then God answered her prayer. What joy it must have been finally holding her own baby boy. Yet, I can’t imagine the difficulty she faced daily remembering the promise she made to God.
I wonder how many times she thought about keeping Samuel. Each and every day she spent hours nursing and caring for him. He was her world. I can only think a mother would look to the future in dread to the day she would have to take her son and leave him. What challenges would he face? Would people be kind to him? Would he be lonely? Would someone be there to protect him without her there? I’m sure she asked herself all these questions and many more.
As I ponder on these thoughts, I can’t help but think of how God must have felt as the days approached for Jesus to come to earth. God promised he would send a savior. He knew Jesus would have to leave him. The bible calls Jesus God’s only begotten son. Their close fellowship would be separated. What great heartache it must have been watching Jesus depart and knowing what He would suffer. Yet God sent him anyway.
As Hannah prepared for the day when Samuel would leave, she had no idea what his future would hold. She didn’t know if he would be a servant in the temple or the next high priest. Even in this she trusted that God had a plan, and what a plan that was. In Samuel’s lifetime he anointed two kings of Israel and was the spiritual leader of the nation. What would have happened if she refused to let him go? God would have raised up a leader through someone else. She would have missed out on being the mother of the prophet Samuel. Imagine the pride she must have felt in being his mother. She was also blessed with other children. In keeping her vow, she didn’t miss out, she received more back than she could have imagined.
When you make a vow to God be sure to keep it. God takes note of our promises. He also rewards us for the sacrifices we make for him. If we keep back what we’ve promised Him, we will miss out on the blessings he planned on giving us.