Today’s reading reminded me of God’s gifts. He wants to give us all what we ask for, but he expects us to give it back. It’s like that little ritual I sometimes do before a performance: “I take from the heavens all that I need and I bring it inside me. I take from the earth all that I need and I bring it inside me. And once I have it inside me, I give it away.”
The tools and blessing God gives to us as gifts need to be used to glorify His name.
God gave the gift of leadership to Eli and his two sons, and so they made yearly offerings in sacrifice. But soon his sons became greedy and ate the best parts of the animal before burning it. God grew angry with Eli and took back what He had promised him. Eli did not give back to God or glorify Him with the power and authority he was given. Eli understands his payment to God; in 3:18 he says, He is the Lord; let him do what is good in his eyes. Sometimes I squander my talents and so often I do not trust the eyes of God to do what is good. I want to take matters into my own hands and get greedy with my power, talent, time, money, and other gifts. What would it be like to trust that even the bad stuff was part of a bigger picture? It’s hard to imagine the world bigger than my head sometimes….
Samuel’s mother prayed for a son and promised to give him over to the service of the Lord. In return for the devoted service of Samuel, the Lord gave Hannah, a once barren and heartbroken woman, even more children. Because Hannah is willing to use her blessings to praise the Lord, he rewards her even further. Samuel is willing to learn and listen, giving his life to the glory of God, and he is rewarded by hearing the Lord’s voice and instruction.
It hit me hard in Samuel 3:7 Samuel did not yet know the Lord: The word of the Lord had not yet been revealed to him What Samuel did not have was the written work of God- the Bible. How often do I take his book for granted? The word of the Lord is a gift- one that I need to use to praise and follow Him. How wonderful to be given the very word of God and be guided on how to use it best.
It is not always clear to me, how I should use my blessings to honor Him, but I will take a cue from Samuel and do my best to be present with God and listen to his word. Speak Lord, for your servant is listening 3:10. So often I pray for the Holy Spirit to speak though me and use my voice to carry out His will. The Lord was with Samuel as he grew up, and he let none of his words fall to the ground 3:19
What would it be like to allow Him to not let one singe word I say fall to the ground?
I think I might speak less.