Voices: A Woman After God’s Own Heart

Voices of the True Woman Movement

This is the fifth post in a series about Voices of the True Woman: A Call to the Counter-Revolution. Click links to see posts on prior chapters: one, two, three, and four.

Ah, to be a woman after God’s own heart – that is our goal, is it not? But it is so easy to pay that phrase lip-service and not examine and emulate the characteristics of such a woman. In chapter four of Voices, Janet Parshall shares a key disposition of a woman after God’s own heart: surrender. This trait is exemplified in the story of Hannah, found in the opening chapter of 1 Samuel.

Hannah was a devout woman, who was greatly loved by her husband; but she had no children. Unsurprisingly, this made her deeply distressed. I can only imagine the pain she felt as she longed for God to fill her womb. In beautiful character, she cried out to God and made her request to Him: if He would give her a child, she would give him back to the Lord’s service. Hannah not only surrendered her longing to God, but also promised to surrender the fulfillment of that longing to God, should He choose to answer.

I can think of many times in which I made a request of God that He provided, and went on my merry way, satisfied to possess that which I longed for. Certainly I gave thanks and praise to God, but rarely have I gone so far as to promise to dedicate the request back to the Lord. Yet, Hannah did just that and followed through by bringing the son God gave her to the temple after he was weaned. Her devotion to God is incredible and her sacrifice is far greater than I can imagine emulating. And yet, that is exactly what I must do to be a woman after God’s own heart.

I think of my children growing older and becoming the passionate followers of Christ that I long for them to be. No, God did not require that I give them into His service at age three, but will I be willing to surrender them to God at age twenty-three if He calls them to another land as missionaries? What if He calls them home at twenty-one!? Will I be able to let go of my grip of control and trust them into the hands of the One who gave them to me in the first place? These are not questions that I can ignore. I have to decide now whether I will be willing to surrender them to God when He calls them. This decision will not only affect my future, but it has a great impact on my life today, as it shapes the decisions I make for them now, what I teach them now, and what I pray for on their behalf now.

Like Hannah, we need to make the decision to surrender our longings and lives to God, but the follow-through is a constant act of surrendering. Surrendering our rights, our desires, and our grip. It’s the process of surrendering each step of the way that culminates in living a surrendered life. In Janet’s words:

Motherhood gives us feelings of fuzzy blankets and baby rattles and toys to line the crib. But motherhood is actually one of God’s refining fires. The reality of motherhood is that it’s a place to learn surrender, letting go, trusting and believing that God is God.

But because He is in it, motherhood gives us the opportunity to interact with history. Our prayers don’t just become part of protecting our children from harm and from hazards of their own making. With God in control, our prayers for our children can make a mark on our nation. True women, like Hannah, trust God enough to believe He has great things planned for the babies He has given us – babies we give back to Him for His use, His Kingdom, His glory.

What longing in your life do you need to surrender to God?

In hope,
About Shelli Bourque

An ordinary girl living by the grace of life in Christ. Adoring wife and mom. Lover of quiet places and uncluttered spaces. Beauty seeker and image maker.