Focal Passage: 1 Samuel 16:4-13
Have you checked the labels on your grocery items lately? You may be getting less than you thought. According to 1992 U.S. News & World Report, some manufacturers are starting to sell us the same size packages we are accustomed to, but they are putting less of the product in the box. They are still doing that today.
For example, you used to be able to buy sugar in 5-pound bags. The last time my wife bought it at our local store, she came up short with her canning recipes.
After checking out the bag, she found that it was now a 4-pound bag. Same size bag, less sugar.
How something appears doesn’t always show us what’s really on the inside. That’s true with people as well. We can wrap ourselves up in the same packaging every day – nice clothes, big smile, friendly demeanor – yet still be less than what we appear to be. We tend to be quick to judge people by appearance, before we get to know them. In our account this week, we find that even Samuel the prophet of Israel was guilty of this.
God sent Samuel to anoint the person who would replace Saul. Anointing in the Old Testament was a rite of inauguration of a person into one of the three typical Jewish offices: Prophet, Priest or King. Samuel knew from God he was to go to the house of Jesse and anoint his son to be the next King of Israel. Apparently, not knowing which son, Samuel had some preconceived ideas of what the King would look like. However, his ideas were not God’s ideas. Samuel was looking at the outward appearance while God was concerned with the inner man. With God’s guidance, Samuel was led to a young man named David who was a man after God’s own heart. David was the king that God meant for Israel, even though the people had used their standards to choose Saul.
Waiting for God’s guidance and direction is always better than our own. We must learn to trust Him and wait on Him.