One of my favorite Bible stories is God calling young Samuel. The child is in his bed at night and hears his name being called. “Samuel. Samuel.” You can read more of the story in 1 Samuel 3: 1-10. We will hear it at worship too.
The story is a Sunday school favorite because God calls a child. What a powerful message that God works in and through young people. What a gift that Samuel is called by name by God! Children can and do hear God and share God’s message.
As I read the story this week, I had an “aha moment”. Usually in telling the story we focus on the child. But it was “old” Eli that recognized the call was from God. Eli mentored the child and taught him to listen. In order for the Samuel to have a relationship with God, he needed help from his older friend.
I was reminded of what the parents at last week’s Together in Faith shared. They talk about God in their family every day. Every day. The simplicity of talking about their day and noticing God as part of it. Then they talk to God in prayer together.
Who mentors, models, and wonders about God with you? Who needs someone to mentor, model, and wonder about God?
We never outgrow the need to wonder with others about issues of faith. This morning as I heard the news of horrible language used to describe people—God’s children—from other countries, my heart was breaking. The voice of comfort and hope from a friend gave me courage to face the day.
You may not remember the end of the story of Samuel. We often stop with Samuel saying “Speak for your servant is listening.” But…God tells Samuel to speak truth to power. Samuel tells Eli of coming punishment from God. So the teaching comes full circle—old to young the young to old. And Eli listens too.
To think about:
• How do you listen to God?
• What is God calling you to do?
• Who needs you to listen?
• Who do you need to listen to?