Hannah and the Early Life of Samuel
And the child Samuel grew on, and was in favour both with the Lord, and also with men. 1 Samuel 2:26.
The fulfillment of Hannah’s vow to dedicate her child to the Lord was not deferred until he could be presented at the tabernacle. From the earliest dawn of intellect she trained his infant mind to love and reverence God, and to regard himself as the Lord’s. By every familiar object surrounding him she sought to lead his thoughts up to the Creator.
When separated from her child, the faithful mother’s solicitude did not cease. He was the subject of her prayers. Every year she made him a little coat, and when she came with her husband to the yearly sacrifice, she presented it to the child as a token of her love. With every stitch of that coat she had breathed a prayer that he might be pure, noble, and true. She did not ask that he might be great, but earnestly pleaded that he might be good.
Her faith and devotion were rewarded. She saw her son, in the simplicity of childhood, walking in the love and fear of God. She saw him growing up to manhood in favor with God and man, humble, reverent, prompt in duty, and earnest in the service of his divine Master....
Would that every mother could realize how great are her duties and her responsibilities, and how great will be the reward of faithfulness. The mother’s daily influence upon her children is preparing them for everlasting life or eternal death. She exercises in her home a power more decisive than the minister in the desk, or even the king upon his throne. The day of God will reveal how much the world owes to godly mothers for men who have been unflinching advocates of truth and reform—men who have been bold to do and dare, who have stood unshaken amid trials and temptations; men who chose the high and holy interests of truth and the glory of God, before worldly honor or life itself.
When the Judgment shall sit, and the books shall be opened; when the “well done” of the great Judge is pronounced, and the crown of immortal glory is placed upon the brow of the victor, many will raise their crowns in sight of the assembled universe, and pointing to their mother say, “She made me all I am through the grace of God. Her instruction, her prayers, have been blessed to my eternal salvation.”
Samuel became a great man in the fullest sense, as God estimates character.... Young men should be trained to stand firm for the right amid the prevailing iniquity, to do all in their power to arrest the progress of vice, and to promote virtue, purity, and true manliness. The impressions made upon the mind and character in early life are deep and abiding.—The Signs of the Times, November 3, 1881.
From Reflecting Christ - Page 196