“The word of the Lord was rare in those days; visions were not widespread.”
For a community that feels that the inspiration of God is absent, this interaction between God and Samuel is ever more extraordinary. Imagine a time when the divine presence was hard to find. Now imagine the gift of hearing God calling your name. Whom does God call? God does not seek out the king, the teachers, or the successful. God’s voice calls out to a boy. The boy responds: “Speak, for your servant is listening.” The voice of God is diverse; it calls out to many different people and places at different times. It does not discriminate between the deserving and undeserving. When we hear the voice of God, we need only to respond: “Speak, for your servant is listening.”
Psalm: Psalm 89:20-37
20 I have found David my servant; *
with my holy oil have I anointed him.
21 My hand will hold him fast *
and my arm will make him strong.
22 No enemy shall deceive him, *
nor any wicked man bring him down.
23 I will crush his foes before him *
and strike down those who hate him.
24 My faithfulness and love shall be with him, *
and he shall be victorious through my Name.
25 I shall make his dominion extend *
from the Great Sea to the River.
26 He will say to me, ‘You are my Father, *
my God, and the rock of my salvation.’
27 I will make him my firstborn *
and higher than the kings of the earth.
28 I will keep my love for him for ever, *
and my covenant will stand firm for him.
29 I will establish his line for ever *
and his throne as the days of heaven.”
30 “If his children forsake my law *
and do not walk according to my judgments;
31 If they break my statutes *
and do not keep my commandments;
32 I will punish their transgressions with a rod *
and their iniquities with the lash;
33 But I will not take my love from him, *
nor let my faithfulness prove false.
34 I will not break my covenant, *
nor change what has gone out of my lips.
35 Once for all I have sworn by my holiness: *
‘I will not lie to David.
36 His line shall endure for ever *
and his throne as the sun before me;
37 It shall stand fast for evermore like the moon, *
the abiding witness in the sky.’ “