I Samuel 3:1-4
I was reading Scripture just now. I opened my Bible to the story where God calls out to Samuel in the temple, but Samuel is just a boy and he thinks it is the old priest Eli calling him. Before I started reading, this thought flitted across my mind: "Oh, I already know this story. There's nothing new for me in this one." I'm ashamed to admit it but there are times when I come to one of the less exciting passages in Scripture and I even catch myself thinking "This passage really isn't very interesting. There really isn't much in it. I need to find a passage with something good in it if I am going to teach on it."
Now, I am a pastor. I've committed my life to God's Word, to reading it, interpreting it, and preaching and teaching it. So I was thinking, if I can underestimate God's word in this way, if someone who has committed their life to the Bible can take it for granted like this sometimes, then maybe you do too. The truth God is reminding me of today is that every single word of Scripture is here by His expressed desire. Every passage is a precious treasure that is there to encourage, challenge and teach us. We can open our Bibles to literally ANY section and with enough study, prayer, and help from the Holy Spirit mine out precious truths that will nourish our souls.
God reminded me of all that by showing me something in this passage I had missed. Samuel was sleeping in the tabernacle. If I understand the book of Leviticus rightly, then only certain Levites were even allowed in the tabernacle at all. Samuel was not one of these Levites, but by virtue of him being dedicated to the Lord from birth and being placed in the charge of the priest Eli, he had received this great privilege. As a young boy he slept in the presence of God! Not in the Holy of Holies, mind you, but in the tabernacle just a stone's throw away from God's presence. What a privilege! What a blessing!
But you know, this is a privilege all New Testament believers can enjoy. We ought not to "visit" God once a week in church but we ought to dwell with Him throughout the week. Stay in His presence young Christian! Pray, read Scripture, cultivate an awareness of Christ in you, learn to listen to the leading of the Holy Spirit and to enjoy His presence. And when you lay down your head at night may you sense the Father's presence so strongly that you can almost hear Him singing over you (Zephaniah 3:17).