“Now the LORD said to Samuel, “’How long will you mourn for Saul, seeing I have rejected him from reigning over Israel? Fill your horn with oil, and go; I am sending you to Jesse the Bethlehemite. For I have provided Myself a king among his sons.”’” (1 Sam 16:1)
In my rush to get to the “good stuff” that involves David, the shepherd boy who became king, I often overlook the other important lessons in this story.
Immediately before the verse above, Samuel had parted ways with King Saul. He deeply mourned the recent events in Israel. He mourned the fact that Israel had rejected God in favor of an earthly king. He mourned that the people ignored his advice. He mourned that Saul failed to obey God’s commands, and as a result would no longer be king. In short, Samuel mourned over the correct things.
We’re not told how long the mourning continued, but at the perfect moment, God stepped in and said it was time for Samuel to get back up in the saddle. I love the fact that God didn’t tell Samuel it was time to stop mourning completely. He just gave him a new assignment – a new job on which to focus. Samuel’s next task was to anoint a new king, so his preparation consisted of grabbing his horn, filling it with oil, and going.
Friends, it is very easy for us to remain focused on past disappointments and failures – our own, and those of others. When life crushes us, it’s certainly right to mourn our losses. However, we need to remain sensitive to His voice during those times. For at just the right moment, He may ask us to go serve Him once again. As long as we’re living, He’s not through with us.
Maybe today He is telling you to fill your horn and go? Perhaps it’s time… –Dave
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