The Profile of a Godly Woman

Pastor Phil Andrukaitis, May 14, 2023, Mother’s Day

Sermon Title: The Profile of a Godly Woman

Sermon Text: 1st & 2nd Samuel


“As Mother’s Day turns 115-years-old this year, it is a time when moms are honored with brunches, gifts, cards, flowers – a general outpouring of love and appreciation.[1]

“But the holiday has more somber roots:  It was founded for mourning women to remember fallen soldiers and work for peace.  And when the holiday went commercial, its greatest champion, Anna Jarvis, gave everything to fight it, dying penniless and broken in a sanitarium.

“It all started in the 1850s, when West Virginia women’s organizer Ann Reeves Jarvis—Anna’s mother—held Mother’s Day work clubs to improve sanitary conditions and try to lower infant mortality by fighting disease and curbing milk contamination.  Olivia Waxman adds,

Anna Reeves Jarvis’ experience of motherhood had been infused with sadness.  Of the 13 children that she bore, only four lived to adulthood.  Her story was not uncommon; an estimated 15 to 30% of infants in that Appalachian region died before their first birthday throughout the 19th and early 20th century, largely due to epidemics that were spread by poor sanitary conditions…”[2]

In addition to the efforts to lower infant mortality, these “work clubs” also tended wounded soldiers from both sides during the U.S. Civil War from 1861 to 1865.

Brian Handwerk wrote, “in the postwar years Jarvis and other women organized Mother’s Friendship Day picnics and other events as pacifist strategized to unite former foes.  Julia Ward Howe, for one—best known as the composer of “The Battle Hymn of the Republic”—issued a widely read “Mother’s Day Proclamation” in 1870, calling for women to take an active political role in promoting peace.

“Around the same time, Jarvis had initiated a Mother’s Friendship Day for Union and Confederate loyalists across her state.  But it was her daughter Anna who was most responsible for what we call Mother’s Day—and who would spend most of her later life fighting what it had become.  Anna Jarvis never had children of her own, but the death of her own mother [1905] inspired her to organize the first Mother’s Day observances in 1908.

“On May 10 of that year, families gathered at events in Jarvis’s hometown of Grafton, West Virginia—at a church now renamed the International Mother’s Day Shrine—as well as in Philadelphia, where Jarvis lived at the time, and in several other cities.

“Largely through Jarvis’s efforts, Mother’s Day came to be observed in a growing number of cities and states until U.S. President Woodrow Wilson officially set aside the second Sunday in May in 1914 for the holiday.

Quotes on Motherhood

Abraham Lincoln:  I remember my mother’s prayers and they have always followed me.  They have clung to me all my life.                                                                                                                            

W. L. Caldwell:  The pride of America is its mothers.                                                                                  

Henry Ward Beecher:  The mother’s heart is the child’s schoolroom.

George Eliot:  I think my life began with waking up and loving my mother’s face.

Leon Blum:  When a woman is twenty, a child deforms her; when she is thirty, he preserves her; and when forty, he makes her young again.

Unknown Author:  The most important thing a father can do for his children is to love their mother.

Florida Scott-Maxwell:  No matter how old a mother is, she watches her middle-aged children for signs of improvement.

Irish Proverb:  A man loves his sweetheart the most, his wife the best, but his mother the longest.

Transitional Thoughts

While the origins of Mother’s Day and the previous quotations offer inspiring insights to honor mothers, there is an increasing need for godly women today, considering that our culture’s rejection of the biblical view of marriage (e.g. increasing divorces; same sex marriages) and the sanctity of life (e.g. abortion and euthanasia).  As a result, many unhealthy households give rise to child abuse as children are ignored, neglected, even abandoned.  It breaks our hearts to learn of these incidents through the news outlets.

Moms, you are the makers of men; the architects of the next generation.[3]

While the Sacred Text reveals several examples of godly mothers, I wish to encourage women to examine the life of Hannah who was a godly woman and the mother of Samuel.  Who was Samuel?  He led the ancient nation of Israel for many years as a prophet, priest, and judge. 

Therefore, I believe Hannah epitomizes the profile of a godly woman because she exhibited three outstanding characteristics:

I.         A godly wife dedicates herself to her husband. (1st Samuel 1:1-8)

II.        A godly woman dedicates herself to the LORD. (1st Samuel 1:9-18)

III.      A godly mother dedicates her children to the LORD. (1st Samuel 1:19-28; 2:18-21)

I.         A godly wife dedicates herself to her husband (1st Samuel 1:1-8).

As we read this passage, we are struck by the fact Hannah is one of two wives, married to Elkanah whose home was in the mountains of Ephraim (Eastern Samaria).  Let’s realize that from the beginning, polygamy was never God’s intention for humans.  Though polygamy is never condemned in the OT, its complications and unsavory results are all too evident, as we see in Elkanah’s family.

Hannah must have lived with much sorrow in her heart, knowing that she could not bear children for her husband.  And if that was not bad enough, Hannah had to endure the provocations of the other wife, Peninnah, who was able to bear Elkanah’s children.

While we may feel sadness for Hannah, I also feel sadness for Peninnah.  Even though Peninnah was mean spirited and reminded Hannah of her barrenness, (and I am not condoning such actions), Peninnah was Elkanah’s second love while Hannah was Elkanah’s first love because he gave Hannah a double portion for the offerings to the LORD. 

You see, Elkanah and Hannah were dedicated to one another (1st Samuel 1:4-8).  His tender expressions of love for his barren and sad wife led him to say to her, “Hannah, why do you weep?  Why do you not eat?  And why is your heart grieved?  Am I not better to you than ten sons?” 

Before you criticize Elkanah, he truly understood Hannah’s emotional pain and was appealing to the satisfaction they both enjoyed in their marriage.  Obviously, Hannah was devoted to her husband.

While Peninnah felt her husband’s lesser love, she too was a woman, wife, and mother whose heart was hurt, perhaps even broken.  Therefore, these painful circumstances created an unhealthy and sad family.  I’m reminded of two other OT patriarchs who also struggled with similar issues, Abraham (Sarah and Hagar) and Jacob (Lea and Rachel)

Every time we deviate from God’s will, someone gets hurt.  In this household, polygamy was never God’s intention; however, God used this tragic setting to bring forth something good.

At any rate, on this occasion Hannah was grieving because of her barrenness and painful words from Peninnah.  And Elkanah sought to comfort her with kind and encouraging words.  (I hope that he had some kind words for Peninnah, too).

While two wives competed for their husband’s love, it is obvious that Hannah was dedicated to her husband.  My brothers and sisters, if we are going to raise healthy children in our homes, there must be love, respect, and devotion for one another.

  • Husbands, love your wives as Christ loved the church.
  • Wives, submit to and respect your husbands.

If the children see hurtful actions and hear the ugly name calling, your children will grow up with a warped view of your lives and home.  A godly wife dedicates herself to her husband. 

II.        A godly woman dedicates herself to the LORD (1st Samuel 1:9-18).

Speaking frankly and gently to the women [and men], it is easy to declare our trust in God when life is good, the home is operating smoothly, and everyone is healthy and wealthy.  However, when the things in our lives begin to crash and burn all around us…

  • Do we weaken in our faith? 
  • Do we withhold our praise and loving adoration from God?
  • Do we stop reading the Bible and offering up to God our prayers? 
  • Do we stop attending church, our giving, and our serving?

It seems that Hannah’s life and home were on the verge of falling apart.  While Peninnah was secure in her place at home, Hannah’s “step-children” were a cruel reminder that God had closed Hannah’s womb.  Consequently, Hannah’s heart was filled with sorrow, yet her prayers reveal an intimate relationship with God, as her prayers came from the depth of her wounded heart. 

Hannah had a solid theological understanding of the LORD.  Even though she shared her husband with another woman who could bear children, she knew that it was the LORD who opened and closed the womb.  Therefore, she did not complain to her husband.  She did not fight with the other wife.  Hannah simply carried her cross and poured out her heart to God through prayer.  What more can she do? 

What are we to think when we see others whose lives are marked by a lifetime of suffering?  What do we think when we see suffering in our own lives? 

Sadly, some saints believe their suffering is punishment from God because of a sinful deed or attitude in their lives.  NO!  Do not ever believe that lie from the pit of hell.  Jesus suffered our punishment for our sins on the cross.  If there is any suffering in our lives, it is part of God’s plan…

  • …to conform us into the image of Jesus
  • …to receive His grace when we are weak; only then are we are strong in the LORD
  • …to experience the consequences of our actions thereby growing in wisdom

Listen, God is at work in us.  He began a good work in those He has saved.  His love for you is unconditional.  The work He began in you, He will complete it.  So, to answer the question, what are we to think when we see others whose lives are marked by a lifetime of suffering?  Those who suffer the most have the most to give to others.  

Here are several lessons that flow out of Hannah’s prayers, which are applicable for all of us:

  • Pour out your heart to God, sincerely.
  • Don’t use “drugs” to assist your prayers.  (Don’t lose yourself in alcohol.)
  • Be careful not to make vows without thinking through their effects. 
  • Render praise and worship to God, even when your heart is broken.

To everyone, especially to the women, “Delight yourself also in the Lord, and He shall give you the desires of your heart” (Psalm 37:4).

I.          A godly wife dedicates herself to her husband. (1st Samuel 1:1-8)
II.        A godly woman dedicates herself to the LORD. (1st Samuel 1:9-18)


III.      A godly mother dedicates her children to the LORD (1st Samuel 1:19-28; 2:18-21).

By the time the annual spiritual festivities ended, Hannah had renewed herself in the LORD.  And during this time, Hannah conceived and bore a son and named him, Samuel saying, because I have asked for him from the Lord.

During those early years, Elkanah went to the house of the Lord to offer the annual sacrifice while Hannah stayed behind to wean and care for her son. 

Eventually, Samuel was weaned, and the time came for Hannah to return to the LORD, His gift – Samuel.  Hannah took Samuel with her, along with three bulls, one ephah of flour, and a skin of wine to Eli the high priest and together they presented the offerings to the LORD and worshipped Him.  And when Hannah’s visit came to an end, Hannah returned home alone while Samuel, who was dedicated to the LORD’s service, remained with Eli.

It is amazing to see God’s gracious plan at work in the nation of Israel for many years.  God used a pious mountain man and his wife to bring Israel back to the LORD through Samuel’s ministry.

I also have the sense that Hannah continually dedicated each of her children to the LORD Who continually filled her heart with joy.  After the birth of Samuel, the LORD visited Hannah and she conceived and bore three sons and two daughters.

I believe when a woman, wife, mother dedicates her family to the LORD, she…

  • …Maintains an intimate and worshipful relationship with the LORD
  • …Trusts in the LORD
  • …Prays for her children and grandchildren
  • …Is fully aware that her greatest role is that of being a mother:
  • Availability for the child
  • Involvement – interacting with the child
  • Nurture – providing a supportive environment for the child
  • …Will not renege on promise made to the LORD
  • …Recognizes and rests in the sovereignty of Almighty God.  Read Hannah’s prayer (2:1-10)

Two immediate principles come to my mind as I reflect on Hannah’s life and prayer:

1st Principle:  Faithfulness over a few things yields faithfulness over much.

Because of Hannah’s faithfulness to the LORD, the LORD attended to Hannah’s needs and allowed her to conceive and bear five more children.  Hannah demonstrated her faithfulness in the “little things” (one son).  Consequently, God entrusted her with five more children.  AWESOME!

2nd Principle:  To whom much is given, much is required.

            Though the Scripture is silent on the rest of Hannah’s children, I suspect that they received the same treatment their oldest brother received. 

Sadly, though, Eli had been given much by way of responsibilities and two sons, who proved to be worthless and wicked servants.  The day of accountability finally came for Eli and his two sons, Hophni and Phinehas.  When Israel went out to fight against the Philistines, Hophni and Phinehas were killed in battle and the ark of the covenant was captured.  When Eli heard the news of the ark’s captured, Eli was shocked, fell over his seat and broke his neck.  What a tragic end for this family.


The Bible says that children are a gift from the Lord (Psalm 127:3-5).  Isaiah writes,

            “Can a woman forget her nursing child, and not have compassion on the son of her womb?  Surely they may forget, Yet I will not forget you.  See, I have inscribed you on the palms of My hands…” (Isaiah 49:15-16a).

Just as a godly mother could not forget her nursing child or turn away from her needy child, our Heavenly Father will never forget His children or turn away from those who have been “born-again” by the Spirit of God with the Word of God. 

Just as individuals have tattooed their bodies the name of someone they love, God has “tattooed” your name on the palms of His hands – Jesus’ nailed pierced hands…

My friends, just as children are a gift from the Lord, God’s greatest gift to you and me was His Son Who…

  • …Entered this world through a virgin’s womb
  • …Lived a sinless life
  • …Sacrificed His life for our sins
  • …Rose from the dead, leaving behind an empty tomb and
  • …Ascended to heaven to sit by the Father’s side and to prepare heaven for those who have placed their hope and trust in Him.

Mary and Joseph were careful to dedicate Jesus to God the Father.  They also knew that God had entrusted His own son into their care.  What a great privilege. 

And it is a great privilege for us when God entrusts children into your care, too.  Therefore, for those who are parents, grandparents, even great grandparents, reflect on the three characteristics Hannah exhibited in her life:

I.         A godly wife dedicates herself to her husband. (1st Samuel 1:1-8)
II.        A godly woman dedicates herself to the LORD. (1st Samuel 1:9-18)
III.      A godly mother dedicates her children to the LORD. (1st Samuel 1:19-28; 2:18-2

God the Father has created each one of us.  Though sin has corrupted the image of God in us, God has not forgotten us and that is why He has given us His Son.  To be “born-again” is to be born of the Holy Spirit, by the Holy Spirit with the Word of God.

Will you turn from your sins and self-directed way of living and place your trust and faith in Jesus Christ Who died for you and rose from the dead? 

If not, you will die with your sins and enter eternity without Christ.  Your destiny will be eternal torment in hell.  But, if you turn away from your sins and self-directed lifestyle and turn to Christ in faith, your destiny will be eternal blessings in heaven.

Jesus is coming back, perhaps today.  Are you ready to meet Him, today?  Surrender your life to Jesus, now.  Ask God to save you from your sins.  Believe that He died for you.  Call out to Him and say to Him, I am a sinner.  Save me from hell and save me for heaven.  Lord God, I want to know You by experiencing Your resurrection power to resist sin, by experiencing Your intimate presence when sufferings enter my life, and by experiencing change in my life; conform me into Your image.  This is my prayer.  Amen.

[1] Brian Handwerk, “Mother’s Day Turns 100:  Its Surprising Dark History,” National Geographic, [doc. online]; from; accessed 2023. May 13.

[2] Olivia Waxman, “The Surprising Sad Origins of Mother’s Day,” [doc online]; from, accessed 2023, May 13.

[3] John MacArthur, “The Profile of a Godly Mother,” [doc online]; from, accessed 2023, May 13.

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