Beer or Prayer

“Not so, my lord,” Hannah replied, “I am a woman who is deeply troubled. I have not been drinking wine or beer; I was pouring out my soul to the Lord. Do not take your servant for a wicked woman; I have been praying here out of my great anguish and grief.” 1 Samuel 1:15-16

Hannah wanted a baby; a precious child to care for and to raise up in the Lord. But year after year she could not conceive. She was depressed.

It’s not uncommon to suffer through a phase of depression at some point in life. What do we do or use to “get through it?” Beer or wine? That’s what Eli the prophet thought. Hannah looked so distraught that he assumed she was drunk. Hannah was doing something much better than blurring her pain with drink, though. Her way of “getting through it” was to cry out to her Lord in prayer, to manifest her complete raw and depressed nature.

Try prayer next time. Be real with God; he already knows your deepest woes and struggles. He hears you, every time. He loves you. He will answer.

A Good Life on Earth

This is what I have observed to be good: that it is appropriate for a person to eat, to drink and to find satisfaction in their toilsome labor under the sun during the few days of life God has given them—for this is their lot. Moreover, when God gives someone wealth and possessions, and the ability to enjoy them, to accept their lot and be happy in their toil—this is a gift of God. They seldom reflect on the days of their life, because God keeps them occupied with gladness of heart. Ecclesiastes 5:18-20

I don’t know about you, but sometimes when life seems to be going really well I wonder if all the good things are distracting me from keeping life’s focus on Jesus and furthering his mission. You know, things like a birth in the family, a new house, better pay, nice car, succeeding at your job, and so on… can these blessings also be distractions?

I suppose they could be, at some point. When life’s “good things” start taking so much precedence in life that Jesus and church and thinking of others and prayer get pushed in the old dusty closet or even forgotten, it may be time to reflect on things.

But Ecclesiastes 5 reminded me today that it’s ok for life to be going well. This is a gift from God! Praise him and rejoice in the blessings. Thank him; he is caring and helpful. When life is going swell, just say “thank you” and enjoy it!