The following is a fictional story based on 1 Samuel 1. I hope you enjoy it.
P’ninah walked proudly through the camp, rubbing her protruding stomach. Her children followed behind her, laughing and playing.
“Children, stay close to momma.” P’ninah turned to her dear friend, Dinah, who was still talking to her.
“P’ninah, did you hear me?”
“Oh sorry, Dinah. You know I have to make sure the children are close to me. We are almost near Hannah’s tent. I can’t wait to see her face when she sees me with all of my children and my big belly.”
“Why do you taunt her so much? You should feel sorry for her. She has no children. She is barren,” Dinah pleaded.
“Is that my fault? I’m not the one who gives life or withhold it. Only Elohim can do that. It’s not my fault she is cursed. Besides, I hope she never have any children,” P’ninah hissed.
“Don’t be so cruel, P’ninah. Truly, Elohim has blessed you abundantly. Have mercy on her.”
“Whose side are you on, Dinah? Whose friend are you? These children are all that I have.”
“You know I am your friend and you know you have more than just the children. You have a host of friends. You have a loving husband. And most importantly, you have me.” Dinah smiled the biggest smile she could and pointed to herself.
P’ninah smiled back, but quickly withdrew her smile when she saw Hannah sitting outside her tent. P’ninah saw the deep pain in Hannah’s eyes. In that moment P’ninah felt bad for Hannah.
Hannah sat there watching all of the children in the nearby tents playing. Children everywhere ran passed her. One little boy tried to catch a little girl, but she was too quick for him. She dodged out of the way, causing the little boy to lose his footing, smashing face first in the sand. But that didn’t stop him. He got up as fast as he could and continued running after her. Sadness spread over Hannah’s face. Then it reached down to her heart.
Elkanah saw Hannah staring at the children and immediately went to her. He knelt down beside her, took her face in his hands, looked her in the eyes, and spoke softly, “My darling, don’t be sad. I know you want a child. When it is your turn you will have one. But right now I believe Elohim is just allowing me to have you all to myself. I honestly can’t be mad about that. I love you so much and He knows that.” Then he gently kissed her lips.
P’ninah became angry at what she saw. Never has Elkanah looked at her like that. Yes, she knew he loved her. She had given him sons and daughters and was ready to give him yet another child. But the love he had for Hannah angered her to her core. She wanted so much for him to love her in that way. She knew no matter how many children she had for him, he would never look at her that way. That’s why she hated Hannah. That’s why she taunted her every chance she got.
(to be continued…)