Archive for February 15th, 2008

One Wrong Turn Does Not Disqualify

Reading of Samuel’s legacy in 1 Samuel 12 during the hubbub of primaries and elections, makes me wonder, who, at the end of their term (much less their whole life) would be able to invite people to report of any wrong-doings in his reign, and have everyone in, in one accord, declare…

“You have not cheated us or oppressed us, nor have you taken anything from any man’s hand.”

This is a priceless testimony for any leader. How precious to stand before your own people, and to hear them affirm the integrity of your leadership!

But the more personal and comforting word from this passage is how Samuel wanted it clearly known that it was not his idea to appoint a king over Israel. This idea began in the hearts of Israel, not in the heart and mind of God. Yet God allowed it, and even directed its execution. But it was the voice of the people that prompted it.

So even after this blatant disobedience in their desire for a king, Samuel presents Israel with an important choice. If they would fear the Lord and serve Him, God could still bless them.

One wrong turn had not put them out of God’s plan forever. Yes, Israel should have never sought a human king. But now they had one, Samuel simply calls them to serve the Lord where they are at now.

We need to know that one wrong turn doesn’t wreck our lives before God! Instead of agonizing over the past, we can get right with God today. I choose to fear the Lord and serve Him and obey His voice today. God will bring good even out of yesterday’s wrong turn.

So just as Samuel puts the choice before Israel after they had made a wrong turn, we face the same fork in the road. On one side is submission to God and obedience; on the other is rebellion and disobedience.

Eventually, after it is all said and done, Israel sees their sin of wanting a king. They see it too late; if only they had realized it in 1 Samuel 8, when Samuel first warned them!

Now they are stuck with a king, yet God can still turn it for good if Israel will repent and seek the Lord. The Lord is well-able to get us on the His path of righteousness no matter where we are coming from.

And though Samuel did not minimize Israel’s sin, he does not want them to dwell on the sin of the past. He wanted themto get on walking with the Lord today.

The Living Bible puts it this way:

Make sure now that you worship the Lord with true enthusiasm, and that you don’t turn your back on Him in any way. We can’t do anything about yesterday, and at the present moment we can’t serve God tomorrow. At the present moment, all we can do is not turn aside from following the Lord, but serve the Lord with all
your heart.

Satan would love for us to live in the past or in the future; to do anything but serve the Lord with all we have right now!

Gracious God, thank You for Your unending patience and Your gracious power that will help me return to You no matter where I find myself today. I pray You will help me to live in the present moment…not grieving and groaning over yesterdsay’s sin, nor fearing or fretting over tomorrow’s problems. I agree with Samuel when he said “What great things You have done for me!”

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