In more than three decades of my Christian life, I have been blest by 2 types of Daily devos'
(matter not exceeding 500 words) in universal Christian literature. Not only those Devos'
which have a different theme everyday but also the ones which revolve around a certain
theme over a period of time, say a fortnight, have richly edified me. In fact, both
styles have their own inherent advantages. If the former style caters to the varying
spiritual needs of a christian from day-to-day, the latter aims 'to ground'
a child of God in a certain subject in order he derives the full benefits of the
deep insightful study of a certain topic, spread over a fixed span of time.
In my Daily devo page, I have consciously tried to go in for 'a blend of both the
styles' whereby within a constant theme, I would be aiming to focus on different
facets of it which admittedly is a closer imitation of the 'Constant theme' style
than the 'Varying topics' one.
As the month of December coincides with the Christmas season, in this month I intend to
dwell exclusively on all the topics revolving around Christmas using the visit of the
Wise man described in Matthew 2 as the base.
Let me wish you a happy and an edifying read… oh yes-MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL OF US!
A servant of God is a pleaser of God
Different phases in the life of Prophet Samuel
The LORD came and stood there, calling as at the other times, "Samuel! Samuel!"
Then Samuel said, "Speak, for your servant is listening." -
I Sam 3:10
I have always maintained that deep study of God’s word is very much like being slowly enchanted by the
beauty of a necklace of precious stones of different hues joined together by
a common thread. Take our own study of the visit of the Wise men as a part
of the wider Christmas story for instance. The common thread of the Christmas
story, running through them, has united all our thoughts though diverse on this
Our meditations on the gifts of Wise men have made us explore the depths, perhaps never plumbed
before, with one thought invariably leading to a yet another deeper one, all
revolving around the Christmas story. The subject of Myrrh –the III gift of the Wise men – had thrown up new
insights, on Jesus’ life being offered in full-bloom challenging us to respond
unresistingly to God’s Call for full-time work even in young age. While
dwelling on the subject of different works in the spiritual realm
(pastoral/evangelistic), we had concluded our meditation for yesterday with the
lead-up thought for today on the prime qualification for God’s service, which
is to possess a God-pleasing disposition.
The study of several great servants of God of the Old Testament times especially with respect to their
life span presents us with a picture rich in variety. If lives of great men
like Abraham, Job, Ezekiel are sketched from their middle age onwards (we do
not know much about their days of childhood or young age from Biblical records),
then description of that of Jacob, Moses and Samuel perfectly matches the
phrase ‘from womb to tomb’, for their lives are presented in greater
Of the latter category, today whilst focusing on the God-pleasing demeanor, I want turn the spotlight
on the life of Prophet Samuel of the tribe of Ephraim (not Levi, mind
you). Though dedicated to God’s service from childhood by his devout mother
Hannah (I Sam 1:28)
as a fulfillment of her vow to God
(I Sam 1:11), Samuel
grew-up in a spiritual climate which was far from ideal working as he was under a lukewarm High priest Eli
even while being surrounded by sinful, pleasure seeking habits of sons of Eli
(II Sam 2:12-22).
To Samuel’s great credit, it has to be said that neither did
he lose his zestful fire for the Lord in spite of his Superior’
lackadaisical nature nor did he allow himself to be influenced by the sinful
ways of his Superior’s wicked sons. No wonder then, it was to only young Samuel, who did not belong
to the priestly tribe, God preferred to talk about Israel’s future
(I Sam 3:11-14),
giving him messages, even when Eli and his sons were alive
(I Sam 3:21).
So much for being a priest by birth without being a priest at heart!
The amazing story of Samuel from a non-priestly tribe witnessing several acts of intercessory
priesthood (I Sam 7:9-11/
12:23) reserved for the priests alone is proof enough
of the fact that God gives more weightage for the heart yearning to please him,
when it comes to selecting His personnel, than any family heritage stemming
even from His own Law
(Exo 28:1). It would also mean that a Sovereign God who
passed an ordinance is alone able to cancel it too!
In the present Christian context, oh how much the story of Samuel has to offer. Oh, how many are taking
to full-time work with no God-honoring motives, as though it were just any
other profession, having not been able to land a job elsewhere! Has God called
me, as He called Samuel, would be the question anyone aspiring for “full-time”
ministry would do well to address first.
Having now laid the base for the core content of my message ‘how can I discern God’s call?’ by focusing on the prime qualification
for His service, I now propose to take-up the same in right earnest tomorrow
without keeping my readers in any further suspense.
Father, even as we intend to don the mantle of being your ambassadors and spokesmen, enable us to
be ever conscious of our motives of serving Thee. In Jesus’ name. Amen.