Several years ago, I was bemoaning the absence of marriage in my life. It was one of those dreams that seemed to take forever to manifest. “Haven’t I waited long enough?” my carnal mind demanded. “Everyone” younger than myself was enjoying a relationship, but there I stood, single as can be. Surely I didn’t have enough patience to last another day!
Then I remembered Hannah’s story from the Bible (I Samuel 1). Hannah came to a place in her desire for a child that she had gone into mourning, crying and refusing to eat. Her unusual behavior snagged her husband’s attention: “Then Elkanah her husband said to her, ‘Hannah, why do you weep? Why do you not eat? And why is your heart grieved? Am I not better to you than ten sons?’“ (I Samuel 1:8)
Poor Elkanah! I thought. He was a faithful, dutiful husband to Hannah, favoring her and giving her more than she needed. Yet to Hannah, he seemed to fall short. He wasn’t able to make her happy in the way she wanted. His demonstrations of love alone weren’t good enough for her.
That’s when God, through my sad pity party, said to me, “Christa, is my love not enough for you?”
Elkanah was a man who was limited in showing his love. God, however, is not, and never will be, limited in His love. He showed the greatest love by sending Jesus, which meant He was giving us everything. There was nothing lacking in that gift. It held everything we needed and everything we could ever desire.
Like Elkanah, I could sense God’s grief when my sadness overwhelmed my appreciation for His love. He had already done so much by forgiving me of my sins and providing the extras that seemed so trivial compared to that. With or without the desires of my heart, He was truly enough for me.
The beautiful ending of Hannah’s story is that God was gracious and granted her request. It didn’t happen immediately. It was after a “process of time” that she saw her dream come true (I Samuel 1:20). She learned to wait some more because no dream is healthy if born prematurely.
Waiting has never been easy. However, it can be beautiful if we’ll remember the love God has for us, and all that love contains. Jesus will always be more than enough . . . and in the end, He’ll lavish us with the desires of our hearts if we truly make Him our first love.
Delight yourself also in the Lord, and He shall give you the desires of your heart.
(P.S. God was faithful to me as well! I’ve been happily married for a year!)