The boy Samuel ministered before the LORD under Eli. In those days the word of the LORD was rare; there were not many visions. One night Eli, whose eyes were becoming so weak that he could barely see, was lying down in his usual place. The lamp of God had not yet gone out, and Samuel was lying down in the temple of the LORD, where the ark of God was. Then the LORD called Samuel. Samuel answered, “Here I am.” And he ran to Eli and said, “Here I am; you called me. “But Eli said, “I did not call; go back and lie down.” So he went and lay down. Again the LORD called, “Samuel!” And Samuel got up and went to Eli and said, “Here I am; you called me.” “My son,” Eli said, “I did not call; go back and lie down.” Now Samuel did not yet know the LORD: The word of the LORD had not yet been revealed to him. The LORD called Samuel a third time, and Samuel got up and went to Eli and said, “Here I am; you called me.” Then Eli realized that the LORD was calling the boy. So Eli told Samuel, “Go and lie down, and if he calls you, say, ‘Speak, LORD, for your servant is listening.’” So Samuel went and lay down in his place. The LORD came and stood there, calling as at the other times, “Samuel! Samuel!”
1 Samuel 3:1–10
Speak, O Lord
“I prayed hard about this new opportunity, and I just feel as though God is telling me I should pursue it.”
“My life is in upheaval. God, what are you trying to tell me?”
Does God’s voice seem to be silent in your life? Do you wonder what, if any, direction God is giving you?
We are naturally inquisitive creatures. We want answers. We have the Bible, but the Bible doesn’t tell us everything. Can we count on God to communicate with us as he did with Samuel?
God has not promised to speak to us that way (Hebrews 1:2). However, God’s voice has never been more readily accessible than it is today. It is the recorded Word of God in the Bible. Even though there are days when I don’t pick up my Bible, I can count on it being there. Even if I don’t have a copy, I can easily buy one. I can read the Bible online. With a swipe of my finger, I can look up a passage in multiple versions and even in various languages. If we cannot hear God speaking to us, God is not the problem. The problem is that we are not listening.
No, the Bible doesn’t tell us everything we want to know. It does tell us everything we need to know. God will not tell us what college to attend, what job to take, the person to marry, or how many children to have. He does say whatever we do, we are to do for the glory of God. He doesn’t tell us if we will avoid trouble today. He does promise to work everything out for the eternal good of those who love him. He does not tell us why we are suffering. He does invite us to find comfort in him. He does not tell us how or when we will die. He does tell us that whoever believes in Jesus, who willingly offered up his life to pay for our sins, has eternal life.
Forgive me, Lord, for listening more to the world than your Word. Lead me, Lord, to delight in your Word and to turn a deaf ear to wicked advice. Speak, O Lord, for your servant is listening. Amen.
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