Refreshment in Refuge
by Gina Burgess
A pastor friend of mine told me that he liked my wisdom droplets post then he said, "When are you going to do something like that for men?"
I didn't think I knew enough about women to advise men about them. Sometimes, with us women, it is all about me. Other times, we give to everyone but ourselves because we love the ones we are with--children, husbands--and everything else that is in our date books.
Then I heard a talk Beth Moore did on Hannah. I don't have that CD anymore. There are, however, certain things about Hannah that just shout out, "WOMAN".
Walk with me, if you will, for a moment in 1 Samuel 1 for a glimse at what makes women tick.
There was a man...named Elkanah...and he had two wives...
Of course polygamy/bigamy is forbidden in the US and in most places around the world it isn't practiced -- men have wised up since the days of Solomon. (I have so often wondered how wise it was for the wisest man in the world to have so many wives and concubines. Then I learned that he had his own apartment and no one could go to him without his leave. That was pretty smart.) But there are a lot of things that men can be married to besides a woman... work... golf... buddies...
A woman needs to know her man loves her above all others. When a man spends long hours at work, at a hobby, working out, with "the boys" then there needs to be a priority adjustment if the marriage is going to work.
When ...Elkanah sacrificed, he gave several shares of the meat to his wife Peninnah with all her sons and daughters; but, although he loved Hannah, he gave her only one share...
A husband needs to show his wife he loves her. We are not told how Elkanah showed Hannah how much he loved her but he allowed her rival, Peninnah, to revile her and torment her because she had no children. That doesn't show much love and allows conflict within the family. No matter what the husband puts in place of his wife--hobby, children, work etc, this thing or person which gets the major share of attention which the wife should have is reviling her and humiliating her. It is torment to love someone and be treated as the "second" wife.
Year after year this happened...
It is worse when nothing changes. We tend to pull into ourselves, get a defeatest attitude. Lose hope, slip into depression -- wait! That's true of everyone, not just women.
A woman's tears usually mean, "I need you to comfort me and show me how much I mean to you." Or they mean, "I've had enough and I just can't move another inch." Or, they spring from more simple reasons like laughter or sadness.
Once when she was in tears and would not eat, her husband said to her, "Hannah, why are you crying and eating nothing? Why are you so miserable? Am I not more to you than ten sons?"
Excuse me? It isn't the same thing at all. The whole of a woman's love is never divided. We love husbands with ever fiber of our being, we love our children with every fiber of our being. Both are love wholly and completely, and it is different kinds. Elkanah did not understand that he would never replace children.
No matter how precious the husband is, living a life being tormented by another or being ignored is devastating. We cry, we whine, we are frustrated. When asked if anything is amiss, we say, "No."
Why do we say that when we know something is wrong. Sometime we want that attention we get when the information is being pried out of us. Sometimes we just know deep in our heart that no matter how hard we try to explain, we will never be understood according to the depths of our feelings.
Hannah was in bitterness of soul. In anguish she prayed from her heart with only her lips moving. Eli accused her of being drunk.
This is just great! [tongue in cheek here] Not only does her rival revile her and persecute her, but the chief priest jumps on her, too. How does one deal with all this strife? Hannah chose to bring it to God. This shows a tremendous depth of faith.
Then she vows to give away her son to become a Nazarite (Numbers 6) if God will just give her a son.
She poured out her soul before the Lord.- Selah!
How often do we pour ourselves out so that God can fill us up?How sweet that is to pour ourselves out to the Lord. He knows everything about me; all the stinky things as well as all the fragrant things so I may as well be completely honest with Him and pour myself out. There is a word in Greek that is translated casting βάλλω ballō bal'-lo which also meant to pour out as into rivers.
Isn't that fascinating? When you pour water into a river it becomes one with the river. Becoming the same as running, living water is what Jesus prayed for us to do in John 17.
If our priorities are in order, when we become one with God and with each other, our differences pale next to the glory of God. The intimacy of being one with God only inhances the intimacy of being with our spouses, our friends, our children.
"Chip Shots from the Ruff of Life" from
Jesus' Front PorchRead Article »
She is the author of several books including: When Christians Hurt Christians, The Crowns of the Believers and others available in online bookstores. She authors several columns, using her God-given talent to shine a light in a dark world. You can browse her blog at Refreshment In Refuge.
If you'd like to take a look at some Christian fiction and Christian non-fiction book reviews before the books hit the book store shelves, check out Gina's book reviews at Upon Reflection
Gina is a partner and COO of Common Sense Marketing Strategies, LLC that owns Authors Community and eBookChristian.com
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