Focus on the Flesh? Risky!
Samuel arose from his mourning and went on the mission God sent him on. Samuel knew that he was going to anoint one of Jesse’s sons as king because God had already told him.
Samuel took a look at Eliab, Jesse’s eldest son, and was sure based on that first look that Eliab was the son the Lord had anointed.
Have you ever met someone and immediately thought they were the one God had sent to meet a need? Sometimes we come across someone who seems to have that spiritual “it” factor. We meet them, and we’re in awe.
Samuel was sure Eliab was IT. His initial gut reaction was to anoint Eliab. How often do we hear, or say, “Go with your gut feeling.”? Had Samuel gone with his gut feeling, Eliab would have been the next king.
God spoke to Samuel, though, before Samuel could make a decision that would alter history.
Samuel saw Eliab’s outside, but God saw his heart.
Humans can’t see what God sees. We see a person’s physical stature, we see the attitudes an individual allows us to see, but we don’t see anything close to the heart condition God sees.
God isn’t concerned with a person’s physical appearance. He created each of us after all.
God isn’t concerned with our natural talents and abilities. He made Moses. Moses had a speech impediment. He called Moses into a position of leadership that would require an immense amount of public speaking. God didn’t originally plan on providing Aaron as Moses’ mouthpiece.
God isn’t in the business of calling people who are qualified according to man’s opinion of qualified. God is in the business of qualifying those He calls.
Go back to the beginning of this anointing passage. Samuel consecrated Jesse and his sons and invited them to the sacrifice (v. 5). Then we read verses 8-10 where Jesse leads his sons past Samuel; the same sons already consecrated and invited.
Samuel has faith in God. God clearly told Samuel that He has provided a king from Jesse. Samuel knows that he must anoint one of Jesse’s sons as the next king, but none of these young men are the chosen king.
How can this be? The king must be Jesse’s son. Jesse has presented his sons to Samuel. God has rejected each of them. Samuel doesn’t doubt God, though, he simply asks if all the sons are there.
The youngest son is considered so lowly that he wasn’t even included in the gathering. He was left in the field with the sheep. He was the baby and not worthy of being considered by Samuel.
God called David, a shepherd boy, to be anointed as king. The youngest of Jesse’s sons. The unlikeliest choice. Untrained, not old enough, not strong enough, not even considered old enough in his family to be invited to a sacrifice, but chosen by God.
Yesterday on the Sharing the Faith Google+ Community someone posted a thought that the disciples, apostles, New Testament authors or Jesus Himself wouldn’t be allowed to teach in colleges or universities in the US today. Think about it. By our standards, they wouldn’t be qualified. No degrees, no training, no qualifications. In his day and age, this was David.
God has been using the most unqualified people since the beginning of time. We need to be careful when we form our search committees and prepare our list of mandatory qualifications for potential ministry leaders that we aren’t simply looking for an “it” factor.
God looks at a man’s heart. Not the appearance or physical stature. Not the natural talents and gifts. Man’s job is to look to God for direction because we can’t see a person’s heart.
Our challenge this weekend in the Christian Bloggers Community was to explain a time when God’s Word was a particular comfort to you in a time of trial. Perhaps you missed my answer in my post tonight.
I have struggled for years with what God might be calling me to do. What is my true calling?
Add to that struggle the fact that when I feel that I might have it figured out I’m always missing the qualifications. I’m not the right sex. I don’t have the right degree. I got married and had kids and really only single people qualify. I live in an extremely rural community and that type of ministry only flourishes in an urban community. The list goes on and on.
Do you see the comfort in the Word now? God doesn’t call the qualified. He qualifies the called.