The Lord came and stood there and called as he had before, “Samuel, Samuel!” Samuel said, “Speak, Lord. I am your servant and I am listening.”  1 Samuel 3:10

One of the amazing things about God is His ability to speak to us all, both as a church, and as individuals. On Sunday, 28th Feb, George talked about the importance of listening to God, really listening to the whole message, not just the bits we want to hear. It’s clear that we can hear God and harden our hearts to his word, not fully listen, mentally turn our back. It’s hard when God challenges us, whispers words that we don’t want to hear. We all know that it isn’t the right thing to do, yet it’s often easier to ignore and carry on, than to make changes within ourselves. 

Many years ago now, in SSCB, the minister spoke about the passage in 1 Samuel 3, when God spoke to Samuel for the first time. You may well have been there and heard the same sermon, I don’t know if you recall it. 

My recollection of it was a realisation of how faithful Samuel was from his very first words, and a self-analysis of my own responses to God’s word. ‘Speak Lord, I am your servant and I am listening’ said Samuel. Wow, what a short sentence with such humility, Samuel acknowledges who God is, he offers his service without question and he listened. 

There was no pause to consider the personal costs of serving God, no argument or hesitation. This teaching challenged me to reorder my priorities, to put service to God first. It helped me to refocus my prayer life and respond to God’s word, ‘here I am Lord, I am your servant and I am listening.’ We know that God’s church in Scotland is struggling, struggling to authentically represent our awesome God and His love for His people. We are all challenged to respond like Samuel, to listen and serve, to invite God to guide us and faithfully follow where He leads. As the hymn puts it “Here I am Lord, Is it I Lord? I have heard you calling in the night. I will go Lord, if You lead me, I will hold your people in my heart.”

[from Cat Rawlinson-Watkins]

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