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  “”Hineni” is a pure, astonished, unguarded affirmation given before all the facts are known. It is a spontaneous, unequivocal commitment promising: “I am here”, where and as you found me, fully attentive, focused, all in. And even more, “I am here”- all of me, with all that I am and all that I can be.”

I first heard this word while listening to a podcast sermon while working. It sounded funny- probably because to introduce the pronunciation the pastor referred to a panini. But as I continued to listen to this message, my heart was overwhelmed with the depth of this word. 


Hineni shows up 17 times in the Old Testament: when God calls to Moses from a burning bush, Moses says Hineni; when God calls to Samuel he is instructed to reply Hineni; when God calls to Abraham to take (sacrifice) Isaac up the mountain, he replies Hineni. This word has so much more meaning than simply your location- it signifies a profound existential presence and readiness to serve; it’s saying “yes” before knowing the assignment.  


This season has been a tough one for me. It feels almost ridiculous to say such a thing because even my hardest days are full of innumerable blessings. My feelings say otherwise, however. It’s been a quiet season with the Lord. Some of you may know what I mean when I say quiet because there are definitely LOUD seasons- usually when we know the Lord is leading us in an uncomfortable direction. I’ve found myself asking, almost begging at times, for a direction from Lord- for our family, work, ministry, life in general.


And He’s been quiet.
And it’s been hard.
And it’s felt… lonely.
Overwhelmingly so. 


The message went on to share more moments where this Hebrew word was used including those when God HIMSELF said it. Isaiah 58:6 “then you will call, the Lord will answer, You will cry out and He will answer here I am. He will say to His people, Hineni.” When I tell you my mouth dropped open, my arms covered with Goosebumps and my eyes began to fill with tears. It was like He wrapped me in the biggest hug. 


Then I heard Hineni. 


I have no idea what this deafeningly quiet season means for me- for my family. But I do know that God is Good. I trust that He has it all worked out and that even though I may not hear Him right now, He is here. He is Hineni- it says so in His word. I will be honest- I don’t feel like I am on that level of full surrender- but I want to be.

So, for now, even in the quiet, I will pray, “Yes, Lord, Hineni”. 


With Arms Wide Open,

Amanda Fields