Now it came about, as she continued praying before the Lord, that Eli was watching her mouth. As for Hannah, she was speaking in her heart, only her lips were moving, but her voice was not heard. So Eli thought she was drunk. Then Eli said to her, “How long will you make yourself drunk? Put away your wine from you.”
— First Samuel 1:12-14
Hannah was praying so desperately that Eli accused her of being drunk (1 Sam. 1:12–14). Eli was both the high priest and judge of Israel, so for him to rebuke Hannah like this was not a small thing. As we are purely seeking the Lord for His interest, sometimes He will allow us to be misjudged and rebuked by His servants.
This is hard to take, but we must appreciate how Hannah responded to Eli. She did not indignantly say, “Can’t you see that I am praying? I am not drunk! Apologize!” Even to one so quick to misjudge, she responded with a proper attitude. She did not seek to vindicate herself. Instead, she told Eli that she was bitter of soul due to the heaviness in her heart. Eli then immediately realized the real nature of the situation and spoke a word representing the Lord, indicating that he did indeed possess spiritual insight.
Adapted from David: After God’s Heart, page 20.
Tomorrow: “A Model for Us”