But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him; for the Lord does not see as mortals see; they look on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.” (1 Samuel 16:7 NRSV)
Years ago, my uncle promised to find a date for my dad.
He called a young lady who said, “Oh, I’m sorry, Werner, but I already have a date.”
The second one responded, “I’m sorry, but I’m going home to visit family.”
The third call ended with, “Oh, that sounds exciting, but I have another engagement. Maybe next time.”
Disappointed, Werner made one final call. Hardly knowing this woman, he doubted she would accept, but she kindly agreed.
The prophet Samuel experienced a similar
situation when God sent him to anoint one of Jesse’s sons as Israel’s second
king. Jesse paraded each of them before Samuel. As Samuel saw the first son, he
thought, Surely, God wants me to anoint him as king. But God, looking at
the son’s heart, said, “No, no. Not this one.”
The second son stepped forward, but again God said, “No, not this one either.” The same thing happened with the third son, the fourth, the fifth, the sixth, and, finally, the seventh. Outwardly, all looked fit to wear the crown, but God told Samuel, “No, I have chosen none of these.”
“Do you have another son?” Samuel asked.
“Well, I do have the youngest.”
“Get him,” Samuel ordered.
As David arrived, God told Samuel, “I choose this one. Anoint him. He will be king.”
Although we, like Samuel, often view the world and its people through our own eyes, God sees people differently. When we seek to discern God’s will, God calls us to listen and discern His leading. If doubt or disappointment arises, we must think like God and trust Him.
God’s choices may differ from ours. He may choose the smallest, youngest, or last in line. After all, He chose David for Israel, and He chose my mom for my dad.
Trust God’s choices, whether you understand them or not.
Marci Dittmer is a private math and English tutor who holds a master’s degree in education and is pursuing another degree at Dallas Theological Seminary. She also writes freelance articles and serves as a vestry member, greeter, and lay reader in her church. Marci loves to spend time with her husband and friends and visit her two adult daughters and son-in-law.
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