How many times have you frantically looked for your glasses only to find them on top of your head? It’s amazing how easy it is to lose sight of things that are right in front of you. And it’s no different spiritually for us.
I’m not sure about you, but one of my greatest challenges is the assurance of knowing that I’m hearing from God. There are many people that feel that they always hear God, but that’s not me. I don’t want to think that I’m hearing from God because I’m led by emotions or distractions, but that I’m hearing God specifically concerning many life situations.
Samuel had a privilege that many of us don’t have…he grew up in the temple…literally! His mother Hannah devoted him to the Lord and took him to the temple to be under the tutelage of Eli the priest. Many of us would probably enjoy the idea of dropping our kids off somewhere…Hannah did it as a part of her promise to give her son Samuel back to God.
If you’re familiar with the story, Samuel wasn’t just living in the temple, he was also serving God in the temple. So here he is…living in the temple, serving God, and under the personal instruction of the priest. Samuel could be categorized as the Billy Graham of that time!
But Samuel found himself in a situation where he heard a voice calling his name in the early morning hours. And each time he heard his name called, he went to Eli’s room thinking that Eli was calling him. And each time, Eli tells Samuel that he didn’t call for him.
Eli finally realized that it was God who was calling Samuel, and he tells Samuel how to respond the next time he hears his name called. Samuel responds as Eli suggested, and God spoke some important details to Samuel. Samuel heard from God!
Here’s the point…you can be in the presence of God and still not know God. Samuel was in the presence of God, serving in the temple, under the instruction of the priest, and still did not have a personal intimate relationship with God. 1 Samuel 3:7a states ‘Samuel did not yet know the Lord’.
How many of us find ourselves in that situation…we’re doing or surrounding ourselves with things that are associated with God, while we remain distant or unrelated with Him? Unfortunately, I think this is far more prevalent than we think. It should cause us to pause and do a self-evaluation of where we truly are spiritually.
One other thing to notice…Eli had the capacity to recognize that God was speaking to Samuel. How was he able to discern this? Since Eli walked with God for a while, he knew and understood the ways of God in a deeper way. Sometimes it’s good to get the counsel of those mature Believers that have walked with God for a long time to help guide you through some of the challenges of life.
Be intentional and focused concerning your walk with God…the only person responsible for it is you.
Stay safe, stay healthy, and be blessed!