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September 27, 2009

A new subject or passage each week for all to discuss.
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millipede
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September 27, 2009

Postby millipede » Sun Sep 27, 2009 8:22 pm

Patience...

1 Samuel 1:1-20
1 Now there was a certain man of Ramathaimzophim, of mount Ephraim, and his name was Elkanah, the son of Jeroham, the son of Elihu, the son of Tohu, the son of Zuph, an Ephrathite:
2 And he had two wives; the name of the one was Hannah, and the name of the other Peninnah: and Peninnah had children, but Hannah had no children.
3 And this man went up out of his city yearly to worship and to sacrifice unto the LORD of hosts in Shiloh. And the two sons of Eli, Hophni and Phinehas, the priests of the LORD, were there.
4 And when the time was that Elkanah offered, he gave to Peninnah his wife, and to all her sons and her daughters, portions:
5 But unto Hannah he gave a worthy portion; for he loved Hannah: but the LORD had shut up her womb.
6 And her adversary also provoked her sore, for to make her fret, because the LORD had shut up her womb.
7 And as he did so year by year, when she went up to the house of the LORD, so she provoked her; therefore she wept, and did not eat.
8 Then said Elkanah her husband to her, Hannah, why weepest thou? and why eatest thou not? and why is thy heart grieved? am not I better to thee than ten sons?
9 So Hannah rose up after they had eaten in Shiloh, and after they had drunk. Now Eli the priest sat upon a seat by a post of the temple of the LORD.
10 And she was in bitterness of soul, and prayed unto the LORD, and wept sore.
11 And she vowed a vow, and said, O LORD of hosts, if thou wilt indeed look on the affliction of thine handmaid, and remember me, and not forget thine handmaid, but wilt give unto thine handmaid a man child, then I will give him unto the LORD all the days of his life, and there shall no razor come upon his head.
12 And it came to pass, as she continued praying before the LORD, that Eli marked her mouth.
13 Now Hannah, she spake in her heart; only her lips moved, but her voice was not heard: therefore Eli thought she had been drunken.
14 And Eli said unto her, How long wilt thou be drunken? put away thy wine from thee.
15 And Hannah answered and said, No, my lord, I am a woman of a sorrowful spirit: I have drunk neither wine nor strong drink, but have poured out my soul before the LORD.
16 Count not thine handmaid for a daughter of Belial: for out of the abundance of my complaint and grief have I spoken hitherto.
17 Then Eli answered and said, Go in peace: and the God of Israel grant thee thy petition that thou hast asked of him.
18 And she said, Let thine handmaid find grace in thy sight. So the woman went her way, and did eat, and her countenance was no more sad.
19 And they rose up in the morning early, and worshipped before the LORD, and returned, and came to their house to Ramah: and Elkanah knew Hannah his wife; and the LORD remembered her.
20 Wherefore it came to pass, when the time was come about after Hannah had conceived, that she bare a son, and called his name Samuel, saying, Because I have asked him of the LORD.


This was a story we went over with the kids in children's church today. The theme to it was Patience and I thought it was a good lesson. At the beginning of children's church we have all the kids together from 4 year olds to 5th grade. They sing a few songs and then someone will introduce the theme of the lesson that they will be learning in their individual classes. The girl that introduced that topic today brought in a monarch butterfly that hatched just this morning. She talked about how long that caterpillar waited and the different phases it went through before becoming a beautiful butterfly. I thought it was a great example.
I'll be honest, my first thought about that lesson was to tell some of the kids in my class how they could be patient during the lesson. I help out with 5 year olds that are more interested in playing than anything else most of the time.
But to be honest, I think we can all use a lesson in patience sometimes.
In this story, Hannah didn't sound like she was always perfectly patience. It also doesn't state how long she was waiting. What we do know that it was year after year, so I suspect some time. There's lots of couples today that cannot conceive and know it is hard for most of them to be patient.
What this story tells us is that God is faithful to us. We know this. We know God loves us. But there's so many things that we want or need. We often wonder WHEN....... Some people are more pressed than others. Some might want a new car or job, others might be wondering where their next meal will come from. It can be difficult to remain patient in any circumstance at times.
I personally like to think when times are tough, what happens will happen and no amount of worrying I do is going to speed things up. That's not always easy to put into practice, but it's how I try to be patient most of the time. Some people say "one day at a time" but the truth is we often have to take one moment at a time.
I'm not sure how this passage will read to everyone, but I hope you can see somethings you already know. Some things take time and God is faithful.

Here's a short verse with a Perfect example of patience...
Isaiah 53:7
He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth.


And what is the importance of patience?
James 1:4
But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.


Now that is an encouraging verse. Here's another I like and very much impacts this topic...
Galatians 5:22-23a (NIV)
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,
23 gentleness and self-control.


I often think of that verse when thinking about the Holy Spirit. There are many that go on about the importance of tongues and healing and stuff. I'm not going to get into that discussion right now and I'm in no way criticizing that sort of thing. But right here, this verse, tells you the fruit of the spirit... These things you will see in people that have the Holy Spirit within them. This is the evidence. Notice the word "patience"?
I think that's an important thing to notice.

I could go on and on in this discussion but I'll leave you with a bit to think about. Are we patient? Are we patient enough might be a better question. I know lots of people that think they are patient but lose control over some fairly trivial things at times. I like to think of myself as a patient person but I must admit there are times when I really have to force myself to try to be patient. I don't mind waiting in a long line at a grocery store... But it isn't as easy for me to be patient when someone cuts me off in traffic and then goes REALLY slow. So I still have areas in my life where I still need to work on my patience, as I'm sure many of you reading this do as well. I'll leave you with a link with more verses on patience and I'll quote that verse in James again.
James 1:4
But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.


Let patience have her work in you...
http://www.bible-topics.com/Patience.html

Dear Lord, thank you for this day and all the blessings in it. Thank you for my family and my friends. Thank you that I have a church to go to each week to worship you and learn more about you. Thank you Lord for being so patient with me. I pray that I might also extend that patience on to all those around me. Teach me what it means to be patient in all I do.
Amen

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