“Then the LORD called yet again, “Samuel!” So Samuel arose and went to Eli, and said, “Here I am, for you called me.” He answered, “I did not call, my son; lie down again.” (Now Samuel did not yet know the LORD, nor was the word of the LORD yet revealed to him.) And the LORD called Samuel again the third time. So he arose and went to Eli, and said, “Here I am, for you did call me.” Then Eli perceived that the LORD had called the boy.”
I Samuel 3:6-8 NKJV
Here I am
The Holy Spirit is in the world, convicting it of sin. When Jesus left for Heaven, He left the Helper to work in His disciples and to work in the hearts of those He would call. Through the Helper, one is made aware of God, or more precisely, is made aware of their sinful state apart from God.
“Nevertheless I tell you the truth. It is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I depart, I will send Him to you. And when He has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: of sin, because they do not believe in Me; of righteousness, because I go to My Father and you see Me no more; of judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.”
John 16:7-11 NKJV
I read this morning of God’s call on Samuel, of that moment when the supernatural encountered the natural, and a little boy came to know the Lord. God is the one who initiates contact with those He will call. I often hear of people who are seeking God, but in reality He is seeking them.
God called Samuel, and each time he responded, “Here I am!” He had a heart that was willing to respond to the call of God, and he would be used greatly.
In these New Testament times, those who do not know God are receiving the call upon them. It might be a feeling of guilt, or shame, or a sense that there is something more to life. It could be an awareness of what comes after death, and the fear thereof.
I look back at my life and I can remember many little moments when I felt the call of God. I had some familliarity with Jesus early on in life, as I had gone to church with my family.
Through the years, the voice was persistent, but unlike Samuel, I did not jump up and say “here I am”, but I instead hid and sought to shut my ears to His voice. I loved my sin too much to let it go. Over time, God used many situations to amplify His voice, filling my heart and saving my soul.
He did not stop calling. He soon called me to do name tags, He then called me to drive the church van, join the choir, and teach a Sunday school class.
Each time He called, I hesitated, feeling inadequate to fulfill the ministry Jesus had for me. Each time He reminded me that He gave me the ability and would support me. LIke Moses feeling inadequate for the mission to liberate the children of Israel, I was built up and encouraged by the Lord, taking one baby step of faith at a time.
“So when the LORD saw that he turned aside to look, God called to him from the midst of the bush and said, “Moses, Moses!” And he said, “Here I am.”
But Moses said to God, “Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh, and that I should bring the children of Israel out of Egypt?””
Exodus 3:4, 11 NKJV
“So He said, “I will certainly be with you. And this shall be a sign to you that I have sent you: When you have brought the people out of Egypt, you shall serve God on this mountain.””
Exodus 3:12 NKJV
As He was with Moses, He has been with me. I remember when I spoke before the Grace Church congregation on a crowded Sunday morning on the impact of sexual abuse on my life, I felt His presence through each raw moment, as He gave me power and peace. I have learned to trust in the Lord even when what He calls me to do seems difficult and perilous.
When Samuel was called, he had to tell Eli of the prophecy that God had given regarding the coming destruction of his family.
“And he said, “What is the word that the LORD spoke to you? Please do not hide it from me. God do so to you, and more also, if you hide anything from me of all the things that He said to you.” Then Samuel told him everything, and hid nothing from him. And he said, “It is the LORD. Let Him do what seems good to Him.””
I Samuel 3:17-18 NKJV
Brothers and sisters, let us be sensative to the calling of the Lord, and let us be ready to respond. In the coming days we will be called upon to take steps of faith, as we go forth and proclaim the Gospel. We are pilgrims in a hostile land, bringing a message of divine love and divine justice. May we not hesitate.
“Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying: “Whom shall I send, And who will go for Us?” Then I said, “Here am I! Send me.””
Isaiah 6:8 NKJV
There are many more of you who are also hearing the call of God, but do not know Him. You know you need to be saved, and when you sin, there is that conviction, that sense that you are not doing the right thing. When you hear the name of Jesus, you feel that jolt deep down.
I am praying for you. I am praying that you will hear the voice of the Lord and say today: Here I am.
THE PRAYER CHAIR IS OPEN! Send me your requests!