Posted by: Jill Potts Jones | February 7, 2018

Can one woman’s prayers change the world?

A Passionate Hope (Daughters of the Promised Land Book #4): Hannah's StoryHannah’s story is told in 1 Samuel 1:1 – 2:11.  Her devotion to God, abiding love for Elkanah and her overwhelming desire for a child is evident in these one-and-a-half chapters of the Bible and is the heart of Jill Eileen Smith’s “A Passionate Hope”, book four in the “Daughters of the Promised Land” series.

Even though they lived in a culture where spouses were chosen for them by the parents, Elkanah and Hannah truly loved each other.  But as the years revealed Hannah could not bear a child to be Elkanah’s heir, he is forced by his family to take another wife, Peninnah, an unbearable woman who torments Hannah relentlessly over her inability to produce an heir for their husband.

Hannah and Elkanah were distraught over the evil ways of Hophni and Phinehas, sons of the High Priest, Eli.  During one of the feasts, Hannah prays desperately for a son and vows to God to give him to the Priest to do God’s work if only He will give her the son she has longed for so long.

Hannah’s story is a tale of barrenness, not only of childbearing, but of faith and righteousness.  The Jews did not have a king (God was supposed to fill that role) and everyone did as they pleased.  Because God gave people freedom to do as they pleased, it was rare they chose to be righteous.

But Hannah’s story does not end with barrenness. Because of her passionate hope for the future, she prayed a prayer of desperation, and it was out of God’s love for Hannah and His people that He answered her prayer and the prayers of a nation through her son, Samuel, who not only brought joy to Hannah, but also salvation to a nation on the cusp of destruction.

Smith’s imaginative tale of hope and redemption in the story of Hannah is my favorite in the series.  I believe Hannah was as remarkable in real life as she was presented in “A Passionate Hope”.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group, and Interviews and Reviews, as part of their Book Review Blogger Program. I was not required to write a review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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