As I read about Samuel this week I was reminded of a few things I already knew and surprised by something I had evidently forgotten about him.
1 Samuel 1:19 – Samuel was a miracle child. His mother Hannah prayed and prayed and God finally answered her plea for a child. And she dedicated him to the Lord and allowed him to be raised by Eli the priest at the house of the Lord in Shiloh. Those of us who have been blessed with children need to daily dedicate them to the Lord – they are first of all His children before they are our children.
1 Samuel 3:10 – Samuel started hearing voices at night calling him. Thinking it was Eli, he ran to Eli’s room several times – but Eli had not called him. Eli finally told him to stay in bed and the next time he heard the voice to respond by saying, “Speak, for your servant is listening.” This is a great prayer for us to pray on a daily basis as we come to the Word of God.
1 Samuel 3:19 – “The Lord was with Samuel as he grew up, and he let none of His words fall to the ground.” I am too often guilty of letting God’s Word go in one ear and out the other. I (we) need to be very intentional about putting God’s Word into practice lest they fall to the ground. Perhaps we need to ask daily what our “Action Points” are after hearing the Word preached or after reading His Word at home.
1 Samuel 8:1-3 – This is the thing that I had forgotten. As great a prophet as Samuel evidently was (he made the Hall of Faith in Hebrews 11) his kiddos did not follow in his spiritual footsteps. “But his sons did not walk in his ways. They turned aside after dishonest gain and accepted bribes and perverted justice.” A few things I have learned over the years about parenting: 1) Great parenting does not guarantee godly kids – kids make their own choices. 2) Great parenting does slant the odds in our favor but it still provides no guarantees. Here are a few things that great parents seem to have in common:
- They are present for their kids – physically, emotionally, spiritually
- They love their wives and their kids know that mama comes first
- They teach their kids the Scriptures – and don’t pawn this off on the church
- They live with integrity – their kids don’t hear them saying one thing and doing another
- They pray with and for their kids
- They discipline their kids out of love as opposed to punishing their kids out of anger
- They keep their kids in church
- They make sure that their kids choose the “right” friends to hang around with
- They have the hard conversations with their kids as needed.
- They don’t try to be their kids best friend. They intentionally parent.
- They buy lifelong memories with their kids more than buying stuff for their kids.
Grace and Peace!