1 Samuel 1:11 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.
One reason for unanswered prayer is not praying according to God’s will and purpose. James 4:3 confirms this when it says “ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss…” Asking amiss is failing to pray according to God’s will. What the scripture is communicating is that a failure to ask according to God’s will, could prevent us from receiving what we want from God. To avoid that scenario, our prayers must be consistent with God’s will and purpose. When we do so we have the assurance that God will hear and answer, according to 1 John 5:14-15.
Hannah aligned her prayer to God’s will and purpose and got the result that she wanted. Her prayer which was recorded in 1 Samuel 1:11 was certainly not the first and only time that she prayed for a son. She was a God-fearing woman who wanted to give birth to a child for years; having a child was always on her prayer list. What was the difference between her previous prayers and the one that is recorded here? Previously, her motive for wanting a son was for her self-gratification: she wanted to show that she too could give birth. She got her breakthrough when she got to the place where she wanted a son for God’s glory. There was a shift in her mindset. Accordingly, in her prayer she made a vow to God that if He gave her a son, she would give him back to him all the days of his life. That indicated that she no longer wanted a son for herself, but she wanted one for God’s will and purpose.
Rather than merely pray for whatever you want, discern God’s will and align your prayer to it.
Life Application: Align your prayer to God’s will and purpose by seeking to understand what God’s purpose is for your situation and pray accordingly.
Prayer: Lord, reveal your will and purpose to me concerning things I have been praying about. May your will and purpose be done in these situations. In Jesus’ name, amen.