Called Out of Grief – 1 Samuel 16:1

“The LORD said to Samuel, ‘How long will you grieve over Saul, since I have rejected him from being king over Israel? Fill your horn with oil, and go. I will send you to Jesse the Bethlehemite, for I have provided for myself a king among his sons.’” 1 Samuel 16:1

Samuel was caught in grief. Here, we see the Lord calling him out of that. He is calling Samuel to be strengthened and encouraged in spirit, to rise and join God in His purposes. Because God is still working. He had rejected Saul, but that was not the end of the story. The Lord had provided another king, one after His own heart (1 Samuel 13:14). And now is the time for Samuel to seek out this king.

God does not deny us time for grief, for weeping, for pain. He leads us on our path of healing. Whatever that road looks like, however long it takes. Our God is our Healer, and He will accomplish this perfectly. He will heal us wholly. And as we reach stages in our healing where we can rise and join Him in the work, He beckons us to follow.

It reminds me of Song of Solomon 2:10-13: “My beloved speaks and says to me, ‘Arise, my love, my beautiful one, and come away, for behold, the winter is past; the rain is over and gone. The flowers appear on the earth, the time of singing has come, and the voice of the turtledove is heard in our land. The fig tree ripens its figs, and the vines are in blossom; they give forth fragrance. Arise, my love, my beautiful one, and come away.’” God will not leave us in our grief, but will surround us with His love, fill us with His peace, and strengthen us with His might. Because He is working in and around us. He has good purposes yet to be seen. He has not abandoned us or left us without hope. There is still light here. Spring is coming.

Our gracious Lord wants us to experience both the times to weep and to laugh, to mourn and to dance (Ecclesiastes 3:4). There is a time and purpose for each, and the faithfulness of the Lord can be seen in all of it. So we take refuge in His wings during the storm (Psalm 57:1), we know His nearness to our broken heart (Psalm 34:18), and we hear His voice as He calls us into His sunshine (Song of Solomon 2:10).

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