Scripture: 1 Samuel 8:4-20, 11:14,15
Rejection is often harsh. It is difficult to tell people that actions they have done or those around them are wrong or not satisfactory because it often damages the spirit of a person. Looking at this scripture I am literally sad well upset over the way the children of Israel treated Samuel and his family. They said you’re old, your kids are hooligans, and we don’t want you anymore. Then they try to pass it off as not being his fault. It make you feel like hey are saying, “its not you its us.”
Reading this today makes you realize people suck! I am an idealist. I would like t think that the world really could be a better place if we tried to do it. I get frustrated and I admit depressed sometimes when the ideas in my head do not seem to take root in those I tr so hard to reach. I feel for Samuel. I am not trying to say I am a prophet or major leader but I identify with him. The reasons they reject him and his ways are because they just did not get the point. He was tring to show them that God will provide, God will judge, that God is their one true ruler, but they want a king. They want a king not because it is a proven governing system that shows great benifits but because everyone else has them and because with a king they think they will not have to do things on their own. It is a recuring theme in human history.
For those that study the cycles of cultures they see stages. They rise in personal acheivement and cultural growth or expansion. They get complacent with a desire to take it easy where the people of the society do not want to work so hard. They begin demanding entitlements getting what they want without working for it. They receive benifits from the culture becoming dependent to those in power. Eventually the culture falls to another culture on a different stage of the cycle. The cycle averages around a three hundred year life before it restarts. Looking at these cycles you can see it happen through out the history of Israel, Rome, England, Russia, and even the United States the time frame varies but there is a similar cycle.
These cycles also are present in our personal lives. Rejection occurs on the downward side of the cycle. We begin to feel as if we personally are at fault in some ways it is. We begin to think too highly of ourselves and we get a reality check. Humility is important to our spiritual lives because it keeps us in the right frame of mind, it actually throws the cycles out. Humility is not talking ourselves down, but it is being honest about who we are. If you are good at something you should be honest about it, in the same breath we should not gloss over our weaknesses.
Honesty is hard to take at times. It is also difficult to give tactfully. Honesty is needed though. We will never be able to encourage someone in their lives spiritualy or any way if we are not honest. I’m sure each of us has experienced dishonest words that have lead us astray. Do we listen to he dishonesty because it makes us feel good, or do we take the honest words?
God says that Israel was not rejecting Samuel but Him. When we are not being honest to ourselves and to others we are rejecting them and God. As you pray consider how you respond an how you speak. Examine your life let the Spirit of God teach you about yourself and Him, and embrace the truth of life. Let us stop a cycle bent on distruction and instead embrace a life that will build others up on truth.