Talk no more so very proudly, let not arrogance come from your mouth; for the Lord is a God of knowledge, and by him actions are weighed. 1 Samuel 2:3
You would be forgiven for thinking that these are the words of a prophet, for they are strong words; accusatory words. So, who could possibly be this bold, this confident? In this instance, it is Hannah, a woman of faith who had experienced an outpouring of grace upon her life.
Hannah had been subjected to ridicule and continuous taunting for years from Peninnah, the other wife of her husband Elkanah. We know that Elkanah was a devout man and he went to Shiloh each year to worship and bring his offerings to the Lord. All we know about Peninnah is her attitude and actions toward Hannah. She had been blessed with sons and daughters, but she used her blessing to torment Hannah.
This part of the story reminds us to be gracious and thoughtful in the ways that God has blessed us. We shouldn’t make anyone feel small or uncomfortable just because they don’t have what we do. The world has a way of dividing people by collar-colour and gentry, and often one looks down on the other. Peninnah looked down on Hannah, but this is not how the Lord wants us to treat each other.
The Christian should not let ego, pride or disdain have a foothold in their life. God sees every action and he weighs each one. Are you happy for those scales to be used? Each blessing we’ve been given can be used to help others for the good, not make them feel worse.
I am sure that most of us do not actually want to make someone else feel bad about anything and we are all just trying our best to do our best. It is good to be mindful though of how the Lord has blessed us and to ask him how we can use his goodness for the benefit of others.