Abraham! Abraham! ... Jacob! Jacob! ... Moses! Moses! ... and now, Samuel! Samuel!
Samuel was born during dark and dry days in Israel.
After the death of Joshua, the one who had faithfully led the Israelites to conquer the land of Canaan, “all that generation also were gathered to their fathers. And there arose another generation after them who did not know the LORD or the work that he had done for Israel”
(Judges 2:10, ESV). Oh, how quickly we forget! “In those days there was no king in Israel. Everyone did what was right in his own eyes” (Judges 21:25, ESV).
It was sadly reminiscent of the days of Noah, when “The LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually” (Genesis 6:5, ESV).
As evidence of the darkness, consider Eli who served as the High Priest in Israel. “Now the sons of Eli were worthless men. They did not know the LORD” (1 Samuel 2:12, ESV). “The sin of the young men was very great in the sight of the LORD” (1 Samuel 2:17, ESV).
What Isaiah wrote more than three hundred years later certainly applied during the early days of Samuel. The nation’s “iniquities have made a separation between you and your God, and your sins have hidden his face from you so that he does not hear” (Isaiah 59:2, ESV). In fact, “the word of the LORD was rare in those days; there was no frequent vision”
(1 Samuel 3:1, ESV).
Yet, as God’s voice was “rare in those days,” God chose Samuel! Moses was an eighty-year-old when God called him at the Burning Bush, but Samuel may have been only eight-years-old! Old or young, God can! Man or woman, God can! Rich or poor, God can! No matter who you are, God can speak to you, and God can use you for His Kingdom’s cause!
These are dark days in America. The murder of pre-born babies is legal, and marriage is no longer the union of one man and one woman. If a woman doesn’t want to be a woman, she can by surgery become less than what God intended. Oh, and now we need someone in the media to tell us that black lives matter... duh! Of course they do! Every life matters!
Interesting then, that God broke His silence by calling ... not a religious leader... not a powerful politician... not an icon in the culture... but a young boy.
“The LORD came and stood, calling ... ‘Samuel! Samuel!’ And Samuel said, ‘Speak, for your servant hears’ ” (1 Samuel 3:10, ESV).
In these dark days, God is calling... Can we say, “Speak, Lord! We’re listening!”