Tuesday, April 10, 2012
Welcome to Day 100 of our Life Journal!
Before you comment or read what I have posted, please read the following passages for yourself and complete your own S.O.A.P. exercise… How does this work?
S.O.A.P = Scripture, Observation, Application, Prayer
1 Samuel 8 “When Samuel grew old, he appointed his sons as Israel’s leaders. 2 The name of his firstborn was Joel and the name of his second was Abijah, and they served at Beersheba. 3 But his sons did not follow his ways. They turned aside after dishonest gain and accepted bribes and perverted justice.”
v “But when they said, “Give us a king to lead us,” this displeased Samuel; so he prayed to the LORD. 7 And the LORD told him: “Listen to all that the people are saying to you;
it is not you they have rejected, but they have rejected me as their king.
8 As they have done from the day I brought them up out of Egypt until this day, forsaking me and serving other gods, so they are doing to you. 9 Now listen to them; but warn them solemnly and let them know what the king who will reign over them will claim as his rights.”
v 22 “The LORD answered, “Listen to them and give them a king.”
1 Samuel 9:21 “Saul answered, “But am I not a Benjamite, from the smallest tribe of Israel, and is not my clan the least of all the clans of the tribe of Benjamin? Why do you say such a thing to me?” (Sound familiar? That’s almost verbatim what Gideon said when the angel appeared to him in Judges 6…)
1 Samuel 10 “But when they looked for him, he was not to be found. 22 So they inquired further of the LORD, “Has the man come here yet?” And the LORD said, “Yes, he has hidden himself among the supplies.” 23 They ran and brought him out, and as he stood among the people he was a head taller than any of the others. 24 Samuel said to all the people, “Do you see the man the LORD has chosen? There is no one like him among all the people.” Then the people shouted, “Long live the king!” 25 Samuel explained to the people the rights and duties of kingship. He wrote them down on a scroll and deposited it before the LORD. Then Samuel dismissed the people to go to their own homes. 26 Saul also went to his home in Gibeah, accompanied by valiant men whose hearts God had touched. 27 But some scoundrels said, “How can this fellow save us?” They despised him and brought him no gifts. But Saul kept silent.”
2 Corinthians 10:1 “By the humility and gentleness of Christ, I appeal to you…”
Today’s reading seems pretty significant to me today… Israel is appointing their first king… for good or bad. It’s a significant moment in their history.
Interesting story of how God used circumstances to orchestrate his will… Saul sent to find his father’s donkeys, runs into Samuel, who knew this was going to happen.
When Samuel appointed him as king, some shouted “long live the king!” While others despised him.
Such is life.
I love how Saul starts out in humility… basically saying, “Who am I that I should be king??” He is found hiding among the supplies! lol (Again, just like Gideon who was found hiding in a winepress.)
How easy is it to start out excited, serving the Lord, excited to read his word, selflessly giving… to end up distant, angry and hard-hearted. It’s not a long journey, really… Like Solomon (King David’s son) a king having 700 wives and 300 concubines (1 Kings 11:3) and basically finding it all “meaningless.” (Remember what Samuel said would happen if Israel took a king?)
I see it all the time. It’s like watching the parable of the sower and the seeds unfolding right before my eyes. The cares and distractions of life choke the growth that God is doing in our lives. A broken relationship, an addiction, unwillingness to forgive, busy-ness… all add up to becoming distant and disenchanted.
That’s why it’s so important to draw close to God. To keep short accounts. To be quick to forgive. To walk in the humility and gentleness of Christ…
Help me to walk in humility, day in and day out over the long haul, in humility and gentleness of Christ.