Brokenness of Heart

If you’ve been single for a long time, you can probably think of at least one occasion on which your singleness caused conflicting emotions. You might have been happy for the friend whose wedding you attended, yet deep inside you felt discouraged, forgotten, jealous, or all of those things.


I think it’s safe to say that Hannah’s “bitterness of soul” (a topic I introduced in my last blog) contained more than one emotion. Though I can’t imagine her feeling any ounce of happiness for her rapidly reproducing rival wife, I’m certain her bitterness of soul was as mixed a bag of emotion as any feminine heart can contain at any given time.


It is probably safe to guess that Hannah was jealous of Peninnah’s ability to conceive, of her husband’s children with another woman. In private, she probably felt resentment, disappointment, hopelessness and grief. In public, she obviously felt shame and embarrassment—the reproach of her circumstances.


Behind bitterness of soul is brokenness of heart. And Hannah felt just about every emotion that a broken heart can feel.


The emotion that comes from unfulfilled desires, including the one for marriage, is normal. Yet, there is an appropriate way to handle them. If we aren’t diligent, they can lead us to sin.


What did Hannah finally choose to do with her broken heart? She prayed and wept and poured everything out in a personal encounter with the Lord. Her experience has a lot to show us about God’s nature toward long broken and even bitter hearts.


How do you process your pain with the Lord?



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