That day when God came into your life? That day when He became real? That day when it was more than just words on a page, but it became words of God? That day when you ask Jesus into your heart? That day when the Holy Spirit moved in? Can you be patient? Can you be obedient? Can you be faithful?
Do you remember how things changed? Do you remember the impact? Do you remember how your life was transformed? Were you afraid to come forward at first? Were you afraid of what it will mean? Were you afraid of what others may think? Fear Not, Just Believe! When God calls you to it, He will get you through it!
Consider a seed…
Today’s reading begins on the day when Saul’s life changed…
Saul Anointed King
1Then Samuel took the vial of oil and poured it on his head. Then he kissed him and said, “Has Adonai not anointed you ruler over His inheritance? 2When you leave me today, you will find two men near the tomb of Rachel in the territory of Benjamin at Zelzah, and they will say to you: ‘The donkeys you set out to look for have been found—behold, your father has dropped the matter about the donkeys and is worried about you saying, “What should I do about my son?’” 3Then you will go on from there until you reach the terebinth of Tabor, and there three men going up to God at Beth-el will meet you, one carrying three young goats, another carrying three loaves of bread, and the other carrying a jug of wine. 4Then they will greet you and give you two loaves of bread, which you will receive from their hand. 5After that, you will arrive at the hill of God, where the garrison of the Philistines is. It will come about, as soon as you enter the town, that you will meet a band of prophets coming down from the high place, preceded by a harp, a tambourine and a flute, and they will be prophesying. 6Then the Ruach of Adonai will seize you and you will prophesy with them—you will turn into another man. 7Now when these signs happen to you, do for yourself what the occasion requires, for God is with you. 8Afterward, you are to go down before me to Gilgal; and behold, I will come down to you to offer burnt offerings and sacrifice fellowship offerings. Seven days you will wait, until I come to you and instruct you what you should do.” 9Then it happened, as Saul turned his back to leave Samuel, that God transformed his heart, and all those signs came to pass that day. 10When they arrived there, at the hill, behold, a band of prophets did meet him, and suddenly, the Ruach of God overtook him, and subsequently, he prophesied among them. 11So when all who knew him formerly saw him prophesying with the prophets, they said one to another, “What has happened to the son of Kish? Is Saul also among the prophets?” 12(Someone there asked, “Who is their father?”) Therefore it became a proverb, “Is Saul also among the prophets?” 13When he finished prophesying, he came to the high place. 14Now Saul’s uncle asked him and his servant, “Where did you go?” And he said, “To look for the donkeys. But when we saw that they could not be found, we went to Samuel.” 15Saul’s uncle said, “Tell me now, what did Samuel say to you?” 16“He assured us that the donkeys had been found,” Saul said to his uncle. But concerning the matter of kingship about which Samuel spoke, he told him nothing. 17Then Samuel summoned the people to Adonai at Mizpah. 18He said to Bnei-Yisrael, “Thus says Adonai, God of Israel: I brought Israel out of Egypt, and I delivered you from the hand of the Egyptians and from the hand of all the kingdoms that oppressed you. 19But today you have spurned your God, who is your deliverer from all your calamities and your distresses. For you said to Him: ‘No! Rather set a king over us.’ Now therefore present yourselves before Adonai by your tribes and by your thousands.” 20So Samuel brought all the tribes of Israel near, and the tribe of Benjamin was chosen. 21Then he brought forward the tribe of Benjamin by its clans, and the clan of the Matrites was chosen. Finally, Saul son of Kish was chosen. But when they looked for him, he could not be found. 22Therefore, they inquired of Adonai further, “Has the man come here yet?” Adonai answered, “He has just hidden himself among the baggage.” 23So they ran and brought him from there. When he stood among the people, he was taller than any of the people from his shoulders up. 24Then Samuel announced to all the people, “Do you see the one Adonai has chosen? Surely there is no one like him among all the people!” Then all the people shouted and said, “Long live the king!” 25Then Samuel explained to the people the rules of kingship, wrote them in a scroll and placed it before Adonai. Then Samuel sent all the people away, every man to his house. 26Saul also went home to Gibeah, accompanied by men of valor whose hearts God had touched. 27But certain worthless men said, “How can this one save us?” So they despised him and brought him no present. But he kept silent.
–from 1 Samuel 10
How will God use you? What will be the first thing you get to do? How will you respond? Will you walk in obedience? Will you act in alignment to the Spirit of God?
Saul’s First Victory
1Now Nahash the Ammonite marched up and encamped against Jabesh-gilead. Then all the men of Jabesh said to Nahash, “Make a treaty with us, and we will serve you.” 2But Nahash the Ammonite said to them, “Only on this condition will I make a treaty with you—by gouging out the right eye of every one of you, thus I will bring disgrace on all Israel.” 3So the elders of Jabesh said to him, “Give us seven days’ respite, so we may send messengers throughout all the territory of Israel. If no one comes to deliver us, we will surrender to you.” 4When the messengers came to Gibeah of Saul and spoke these words in the hearing of the people, all the people lifted up their voice and wept. 5Now behold, Saul was coming from the field behind the oxen, so Saul asked, “Why are the people weeping?” Then they told him the words of the men of Jabesh. 6Then the Ruach of God suddenly rushed upon Saul when he heard those words, and his anger blazed. 7So he took a pair of oxen, cut them in pieces, and sent them throughout all the territory of Israel by the hand of messengers saying, “Whoever does not come out after Saul and after Samuel, so will it be done to his oxen.” So the dread of Adonai fell on the people, and they came out as one man. 8He numbered them in Bezek, and Bnei-Yisrael were 300,000 and the men of Judah 30,000. 9So they said to the messengers who came, “Thus will you say to the men of Jabesh-gilead: Tomorrow, by the time the sun is hot, you will have deliverance.” The messengers came and told the men of Jabesh, and they were glad. 10Then the men of Jabesh said, “Tomorrow we will surrender to you and you can do to us whatever seems good to you.” 11So it was on the following day that Saul divided the people into three columns; they penetrated into the midst of the camp at the morning watch and struck down the Ammonites until the heat of day. It came about that the survivors were scattered, so that no two of them were left together. 12Then the people said to Samuel, “Who was it who said, ‘Should Saul reign over us?’ Bring the men, so we may put them to death.” 13But Saul replied, “No man will be put to death this day, for today Adonai has brought deliverance to Israel.” 14Then Samuel said to the people, “Come, let’s go to Gilgal and reaffirm the kingdom there.” 15So all the people went to Gilgal, and there they made Saul king before Adonai in Gilgal. There they sacrificed fellowship offerings before Adonai, and there Saul and all the men of Israel rejoiced greatly.
–from 1 Samuel 11
Do you remember? Has life gotten so buy that you forgot? Has the comforts of today caused you to forget how it all began? Has something caused you to lose focus? Has something caused you to lose direction? Has something caused you to lose touch? Do you remember the pendulum experience? Going from needing God to forgetting about Him till the pain and suffering became too hard to handle and then you called out to Him and He rescued you and then you got too comfortable again and the cycle continues?
Why not just stick with God? Why not walk with Him daily? Why not talk with Him daily? Why not build up that relationship and not sway to the left or right? Why not walk out your life conformed to what God is calling you to do? Why not live out life to the fullest?
Samuel Rebukes Israel
1Then Samuel said to all Israel, “Behold, I have listened to your voice in all you said to me, and have set a king over you. 2Now here is the king who will go before you, while I am old and gray. Also here are my sons with you. I have gone before you from my youth to this day. 3Here I am. Witness against me before Adonai and before His anointed. Whose ox have I taken or whose donkey have I taken? Whom have I defrauded or whom have I oppressed? From whose hand have I taken a bribe to look the other way? I will restore it to you.” 4They replied, “You haven’t defrauded us or oppressed us or taken anything from anyone’s hand.” 5Then he said to them, “Adonai is then a witness against you, and His anointed is a witness this day that you have not found anything in my hand.” “He is a witness,” they replied. 6Then Samuel said to the people, “It is Adonai who appointed Moses and Aaron and who brought your fathers up from the land of Egypt. 7So now, stand still, so that I may plead with you before Adonai concerning all the righteous acts of Adonai, which He did for you and your fathers. 8When Jacob entered Egypt and your fathers cried out to Adonai, then Adonai sent Moses and Aaron who brought your fathers out of Egypt and settled them in this place. 9But they forgot Adonai their God, so He gave them over into the hand of Sisera, captain of the army of Hazor, into the hand of the Philistines, and into the hand of the king of Moab, who fought against them. 10So they cried out to Adonai and said, ‘We have sinned because we have forsaken Adonai and have worshipped the Baalim and the Ashtaroth. But now deliver us from the hand of our enemies and we will worship You.’ 11Then Adonai sent Jerubbaal, Bedan, Jephthah and Samuel, and delivered you from the hand of your enemies on every side, so that you might live securely. 12But when you saw Nahash king of the Ammonites marching against you, you said to me, ‘No! But a king must reign over us!’—even though Adonai your God is your king. 13“Now therefore, here is the king whom you have chosen and whom you have asked for, and behold, Adonai has set him as king over you. 14If you fear Adonai and worship Him, and listen to His voice and do not rebel against the command of Adonai, then both you as well as the king who reigns over you will be following Adonai your God. 15But if you do not listen to the voice of Adonai and rebel against the command of Adonai, then the hand of Adonai will be against you and against your fathers. 16Now stand by and see this great thing that Adonai will do before your eyes. 17Is it not wheat harvest season today? I will call to Adonai, that He may send thunder and rain. Then you will know and see that your wickedness is great which you have done in the sight of Adonai by asking for yourselves a king.” 18So Samuel prayed to Adonai, and Adonai sent thunder and rain that day. Then all the people greatly feared Adonai and Samuel, 19and all the people said to Samuel, “Pray for your servants to Adonai your God, that we would not die, for we have added to all our sins this evil by asking for ourselves a king.” 20Samuel said to the people, “Fear not! Indeed you have done all this evil, yet do not turn aside from following Adonai, but worship Adonai with all your heart. 21Do not turn aside to go after empty things that cannot profit or deliver, for they are futile. 22For Adonai will not forsake His people for His great Name’s sake, because it has pleased Adonai to make you a people to Himself. 23Moreover, as for me, far be it from me that I should sin against Adonai by ceasing to pray for you! Yet I will keep instructing you in the good and straight way. 24Only fear Adonai and worship Him in truth with all your heart, considering how magnificently He has dealt with you. 25But if you persist in acting wickedly, you will be swept away, both you and your king.”
–from 1 Samuel 12
He will be with you at the highest mountain tops! He will be with you in the deepest valleys! He will be with you every step of the way! Will you acknowledge Him? Will you talk to Him? Will you build up the relationship while you are living life? Will you trust Him? Will you overcome worry with trust in God? Fear Not, Just Believe! Put your hope and trust in Him!
1“Beware of practicing your righteousness before others to be seen by them; otherwise you have no reward from your Father in heaven. 2So whenever you do tzadakah, do not sound a trumpet before you as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, so that they may be glorified by men. Amen, I tell you, they have their reward in full! 3But when you do tzadakah, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, 4so that your tzadakah may be in secret; and your Father, who sees in secret, shall reward you. 5“When you pray, do not be like the hypocrites; for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners, so that they may be seen by others. Amen, I tell you, they have their reward in full! 6But you, when you pray, go into your inner room; and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father, who sees in secret, shall reward you. 7And when you are praying, do not babble on and on like the pagans; for they think they will be heard because of their many words. 8Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask Him. 9“Therefore, pray in this way: ‘Our Father in heaven, sanctified be Your name. 10Your kingdom come, Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. 11Give us this day our daily bread. 12And forgive us our debts as we also have forgiven our debtors. 13And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.’ 14“For if you forgive others their transgressions, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. 15But if you do not forgive others, neither will your Father forgive your transgressions. 16“And whenever you fast, do not become sad-faced like the hypocrites, for they neglect their faces to make their fasting evident to men. Amen, I tell you, they have their reward in full! 17But when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face, 18so that your fasting won’t be evident to men, but to your Father who is in secret. And your Father, who sees in secret, will reward you. 19“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal. 20But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in or steal. 21For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. 22“The eye is the lamp of the body. Therefore if your eye is good, your whole body will be full of light. 23But if your eye is bad, your body will be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in you is darkness, how great is the darkness! 24“No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will stick by one and look down on the other. You cannot serve God and money.”
Overcoming Worry with Trust
25“So I say to you, do not worry about your life—what you will eat or drink, or about your body, what you will wear. Isn’t life more than food and the body more than clothing? 26“Look at the birds of the air. They do not sow or reap or gather into barns; yet your Father in heaven feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? 27And which of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? 28And why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow. They neither toil nor spin. 29Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these. 30Now if in this way God clothes the grass—which is here today and thrown into the furnace tomorrow—will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? 31“Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear?’ 32For the pagans eagerly pursue all these things; yet your Father in heaven knows that you need all these. 33But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. 34Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”
–from Matthew 6