Prepare to Listen. Take time to still your heart and mind then prayer with the psalmist: Let me hear joy and gladness; let the bones that you have crushed rejoice.
Prayerfully Read 1 Samuel 16:6-13
6When they came, he looked on Eliab and thought, ‘Surely the LORD’s anointed is now before the LORD.’ 7But the LORD said to Samuel, ‘Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him; for the LORD does not see as mortals see; they look on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart.’ 8Then Jesse called Abinadab, and made him pass before Samuel. He said, ‘Neither has the LORD chosen this one.’ 9Then Jesse made Shammah pass by. And he said, ‘Neither has the LORD chosen this one.’ 10Jesse made seven of his sons pass before Samuel, and Samuel said to Jesse, ‘The LORD has not chosen any of these.’ 11Samuel said to Jesse, ‘Are all your sons here?’ And he said, ‘There remains yet the youngest, but he is keeping the sheep.’ And Samuel said to Jesse, ‘Send and bring him; for we will not sit down until he comes here.’ 12He sent and brought him in. Now he was ruddy, and had beautiful eyes, and was handsome. The LORD said, ‘Rise and anoint him; for this is the one.’ 13Then Samuel took the horn of oil, and anointed him in the presence of his brothers; and the spirit of the LORD came mightily upon David from that day forward. Samuel then set out and went to Ramah.
Samuel grieved over the corrupt, immoral and godless rule of King Saul. Why, he wondered, would God allow this man to remain in power? It’s a question many of us are asking as we grieve over a corrupt, unstable and immoral leader who keeps making bad decisions and giving false hope in our present pandemic crisis. God has a plan we may not yet see. He had a plan for Samuel’s day that he too couldn’t see. But he accepted his assignment to go to an unlikely place, Bethlehem, and an unlikely family, Jesse’s and wait for God. The moment Samuel saw Jesse’s oldest son, Eliab, he confidently thought, ‘Surely the LORD’s anointed is now before the LORD.’ He had to learn a new lesson, one we keep needing to learn. God doesn’t see as mortals see. Humans ‘look on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart.’ One by one Samuel rejected all of Jesse’s sons and courageously demanded that the least likely, the youngest, a dirty, smelly shepherd boy be sent for. To the surprise of many, David was anointed Saul’s successor and Samuel returned home. Nothing changed. Saul was still king, still corrupt, still unstable, still immoral. Samuel never lived to see the changeover in leadership. He went back to Ramah with hope in his heart and a prayer on his lips, ‘Even so, come King David.’ Years later prophets understood that David wasn’t the one to bring in peace, justice, righteousness. He was the one through God’s Chosen King would come, Messiah Jesus. He came and we believe he is “now the world’s rightful Lord, and all other lords are to fall at his feet.” As we struggle with our present corrupt leaders we too pray with hope in our heart, ‘Even so, come Lord Jesus.’
God’s timing is never our timing. Samuel anointed a boy and Israel had to wait for him to grow up before he became king. Jesus came as an infant, and we waited for him grow up and conquer death. We continue waiting. Commit to patiently trusting and waiting for Jesus to bring righteousness and justice and healing for all.
Respond to Jesus
I grieve today over failures in righteousness and justice from our political and even some of our religious rulers who offer false hope and peace where there is no peace. Yet, I pray with patient hope, Even so, come Lord Jesus. Amen.
Go live obediently in the world. Live in hope of God’s control and plan.
Because I believe that Scripture is food for our soul (our entire being) I seek to read it and encourage others to read it in ways that nourish and transform our beings. I invite you to read the Bible with me during Lent and into Easter. I am a Bible teacher, spiritual companion and retreat director. I know the Bile and how to read it for spiritual formation.