What if Hannah and Peninnah’s differences, distractions, and difficulties could have been laid aside? Just imagine if they could have developed a mutual respect for one another.
I believe God created women to be nurturing, unique and unpretentious which are amazing attributes which should be celebrated. However, at times, just as it was with Peninnah and Hannah, we tend to be one another’s worst critic, rival and/or a source of heartbreaking pain.
“So Peninnah would taunt Hannah and make fun of her because the Lord had kept her from having children. Year after year it was the same –Peninnah would taunt Hannah as they went to the Tabernacle. Each time, Hannah would be reduced to tears and would not even eat” I Samuel 1:6-8
Just imagine if that “unique” nerve grating quality in another woman is God’s way of using it to complete the work of patience in your life.
“But let patience have her perfect work, that you may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.” James 1:4
As in the case of Peninnah’s remarks to Hannah, what if the taunting words of another person actually could push you toward a deeper relationship with God.
“So Hannah ate. The she pulled herself together slipped away quietly and entered the sanctuary…Crushed in her soul, Hannah prayed to God and cried and cried – inconsolably. Then she made a vow.” I Samuel 1:9-11
“Happy International Women’s Day” was celebrated this past week throughout the world. There are numerous reasons to celebrate being a woman and the strength that is birthed when we accept, honor, respect and walk in unity with one another. Recently, to mark the international day IvankaTrump.com posted, “How to Empower Women to Rise”. The interview spotlighted Lisa Bevere, a well-known author and international speaker, whose life’s mission is to empower women. In the post, Lisa encouraged women with references from two of her books, Lioness Arising: Wake Up and Change Your World and Without Rival: Embrace Your Identity and Purpose in an Age of Confusion And Comparison.
Lisa said we must view other women as our mirrors. She uses the analogy of how lionesses groom each other becoming one another’s mirror. She said once they come face-to-face, a fragrance is released and that basically it means, I belong to you; and you belong to me. [We can probably determine those thoughts never crossed Hannah and Peninnah’s minds].
Another encouragement from Lisa is to stop seeing one another as rivals and to begin to work together. She believes that,” as a society, we make the mistake of thinking that if something makes another woman look bad, it will make ourselves look good.” [Do you think possibly Hannah and Peninnah’s relationship grew from being a rivalry to a unified family?]
The post concluded with the following five tips for empowering women to rise which I, also, think could serve us well in developing enduring friendships. ( A copy of The Skill Set can be downloaded from https://assets.ivankatrump.com)
1. Avoid competing with others
2. Nurture face to face relationships
3. Surprise people with authentic words of encouragement
4. Discover your own strengths and view others’ talents as a win for all</li>
5. We each have a circle of influence: if you see a void, it may be because you’re suppose to fill it.