Remember Hannah, back in chapter 1 promising to give her baby to the Lord all his life? After keeping her vow and giving him into the care of Eli, we hear that she used to make ‘a little robe’ for him every year and take it to him when she and Elkanah went to the temple in Shiloh.

Then she disappears from the story and I’d always assumed that she never saw him again, but maybe heard of his growing success and influence from afar.

Then I read this verse. “He always went back to Ramah, where his home was.” Chapter 1 says Elkanah came from Ramathaim, and my Study Bible tells me that is most likely another name for Ramah.

So having grown up in Shiloh, only seeing his parents once a year, it seems that then, once he was an adult, he moved away and made his home back with his parents in Ramah.

What a blessing for Hannah! She gave her son to God out of pure gratitude, with no expectation that he would ever be a part of her life, but in the fullness of time he was given back to her.

What a generous God!