By Jana Kelley
“The boy Samuel ministered before the Lord under Eli. In those days the word of the Lord was rare; there were not many visions.” 1 Samuel 3:1
I hate waiting—especially if what I’m waiting for might not happen. How about you?
The Bible tells the story of an influential priest in Israel named Samuel. Initially, Samuel had no idea how God planned to use him. He was, we could say, in a long-term waiting mode.
His boyhood took place under challenging circumstances. The nation of Israel had been disobedient, and there weren’t many visions or signs from God. Perhaps the silence was because God chose not to speak, or maybe the people didn’t listen.
This was when young Samuel served in the Lord’s temple. Raised by Eli the priest, he only saw his mother and father once a year. Despite this difficult situation, Samuel grew in favor with God and among the people, and he was faithful to perform his responsibilities (Samuel 2:26).
Samuel chapter 3 tells the story of Samuel’s confusion when he hears a voice calling him in the night. At first, he thought it was Eli, his spiritual father, and immediately jumped up and hurried to his side. After a few times of this, Eli realized the voice came from God and encouraged Samuel to lie down and wait. When the voice called again, Eli told Samuel to say, “Speak, for your servant is listening.”
Samuel served during a season when God appeared to be silent. But when God did speak, Samuel was ready. He quieted his spirit and tuned his ear to God’s voice.
You may be experiencing a challenging situation or be in a season of silence, like Samuel was. Samuel’s example encourages us to remain faithful to God in all seasons so that our hearts are positioned to hear from Him.
Jana Kelley, a contributor to Wholly Loved Ministries’ devotional project, is a Texan who hardly ever lives in Texas. Raised in Southeast Asia, Jana developed a love for cross-cultural living early in life. Her love for writing came soon after. She and her husband married in college and by their second anniversary, they lived in a remote African town. After 13 years in Africa and the Middle East, they moved to Southeast Asia where they and their three boys currently live. Jana is the author of two devotional books and three novels. You can learn more about her at janakelley.com.
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