1 Samuel 1: 4 – 7
“On the day when Elkanah sacrificed, he would give portions to his wife Peninnah and to all her sons and daughters; but to Hannah he gave a double portion, because he loved her, though the Lord had closed her womb. Her rival used to provoke her severely, to irritate her, because the Lord had closed her womb. So it went on year by year; as often as she went up to the house of the Lord, she used to provoke her. Therefore Hannah wept and would not eat.”
Every year, Elkanah would go to the house of the Lord and sacrifice bringing back a portion for each of his families.
What was supposed to be a blessing or gesture to validate the women was actually a source of pain for both.
Peninnah, the wife with the children, was given her part, and each of her children their part.
But, she had to watch as the her husband and father of her children gave double to the other woman.
Not only did she have to experience Hannah getting more, it served as a constant reminder that Elkanah did not love her, the mother of his children, but loved someone else.
Instead of worship being a time of reverence, it was a continual knife in this women’s heart.
His sacrifice was her rejection – both in terms of the portion size and the absence of love from her husband.
It was the source of her pain.
For Hannah, this too was the case.
Every year, her husband would go to the house of the Lord, and every year this meant she would be provoked by her husband’s other woman.
The Hebrew translation said she demoralized and angered her.
To make matters worse, her husband gave her a double portion.
Thinking he was doing something good, what he was actually doing constantly reminding her of the fact that she was not a whole woman.
What he was really doing was continuously bringing to mind the fact that she could not fulfill her role as a wife.
Instead of seeing this time as a time of reverence, it was a time of humiliation.
Worship was the source of her pain.
And, It’s funny…
Despite the distress these women find themselves in, their husband continued his regularly scheduled program with no regard to their emotional state.
He thought he could pacify them by supplying them with what he sacrificed, but he didn’t give them anything they needed.
His worship, his sacrifice, his provision, his presence was supposed to be enough…
Can you imagine being in a space that’s dedicated to worshipping and sacrificing this God, yet feeling like every day of your life is a sacrifice?
Can you imagine the anxiety these women must have felt whenever it cam to worship?
Can you imagine being rejected by the very person who promised to take care of you?
Can you imagine watching someone else receive something you desire so much?
Can you imagine having to endure ridicule and shame, especially over something that you have no control over?
Can you imagine being paid off as a means of pacifying your pain?
Can you imagine the House of Worship being a House of Pain?!?!?!?!
Well, for some, that is exactly what is happening today.
They are being ridiculed, taunted, rejected, pushed aside, and used.
Their problems are being diminished and devalued because “God” should be enough.
The “church” should be enough.
This what I give to you…
This what you leave with should be enough…
But, what if it’s not enough?!
Instead of it being a place of renewal and centering, it is the place where your life is sent into a tailspin.
When are you going to see me?!
When will you acknowledge and address my broken heart?!
When will you stop your rituals, halt your traditions, and de-program your programs to deal with my bleeding wounds.
Peninnah was bleeding all over Hannah in the form of insults.
But Peninnah had the wounds of insecurity and rejection.
Hannah was bleeding all over Elkanah and herself…
That’s because she had the wound of shame and unfulfillment…
Yet, the church still went on like nothing was wrong, not ONCE tending to their wounds…
Instead, inflicting new ones with their rituals and traditions.
The House ofWorship became and was the House of Pain…
#Igotquestions #Ineedanswers #quriouschronicles #qurioustheologian