of the LORD, where the ark of God was.
Then the LORD called Samuel.
Samuel answered, "Here I am."
And he ran to Eli and said,
"Here I am; you called me."
Now Samuel did not yet know the LORD-
The word (Jesus) of the LORD
had not yet been revealed to him.
Then Eli realized that the LORD
was calling the boy.
So Eli told Samuel, "Go and lie down,
and if He calls you, say,
'Speak, LORD, for your servant is listening.'
Then Samuel said,
"Speak, for your servant is listening."
1 Samuel 2: 4-5, 7, 10
Samuel the Prophet is, perhaps, one of the greats among those noted by name in scripture. We learn of his remarkable, yet humble beginnings in the book that bears his name, First Samuel.
It's from that same book we learn of his call. It's a call that every believer of all time has heard; some while young, some well into their senior years.
Yet there's an incontrovertible fact that ... If one isn't listening, the call either cannot be heard, or it's heard but mis-understood, mis-applied.
It begins well ahead of the listening ...
Eli (whose own sons ignored their own call - a matter we could describe & assess for days on end ...) knew the young Samuel was being sought of God. Why? How? What did he understand about Samuel that he didn't about his own sons?
He rightly directs the young boy to listen to God; not to his own or to someone else's voice. He didn't provide a list of "ten next steps", nor did he build some monument or altar to glorify Samuel for having been called of God.
He directed the boy to God's voice (His word, aka Jesus).
Until that moment, Samuel had been listening to and tutored by Eli. Something was changing ... and Eli, to his credit, directs Samuel wisely.
In obedience Samuel does what he's told. The rest is history.
How simple. How humble. Listen to God and obey Him.
I wonder how much grief (or folly) we could spare ourselves and others by simply directing them to do likewise?
Don't mis-understand. I love teachers, preachers, commentators, journalists, bloggers. There's a wide world and a wide array of wonderful, thought-provoking stories or teachings or demonstrations of God's ways. None of them equal The Word.
Sometimes the simple gets by us as we seek out the complex, the sensational.