Too easy – to be all about self. Pretense that all we’re doing currently prevents us from being able to put ourselves out to add another thing to our schedule. So we drive on by the homeless man, impatiently walk behind the elderly woman, don’t look up from our conversation at the waiter.
And I’m pointing these fingers back at myself. Life is full and chaotic and uncertain. And it’s just so much easier to not invite any more in. To just hope I get the next few hours right. To close off any mention of more.
There was a little boy, his name was Samuel. His mother had tried for years to have a baby. Finally she bore a son. Because he was an answer to a prayer of surrender of herself, she, in turn, surrendered him in service to God. One night as he slept in the temple, a voice called: “Samuel”.
At first the boy thought it was the old priest he was serving with, and he ran responding: “Here I am”. But the priest had not called. After the third time, Samuel was told it was God’s voice and to go back and when the Lord called to say: “Speak, Lord, for your servant is listening.” (1Samuel 3:9b NIV)
You and I may not get called on in the middle of the night (or we might) – but we are called. It’s the very nature of being a servant of God. He calls on us daily to be ready, at a moment’s notice, to respond: ‘I’m listening’.
Question is, will we listen, do we want to hear? The things purposed for us as we walk this life aren’t always easy. Called to be a mom, grammy – got it. Called to intervene when I see a stranger needing to hear Jesus loves you, um, gulp – that’s a little inconvenient, embarrassing, not my ‘gift’.
It wasn’t always easy for Samuel to speak up for God either. And yet he spent the rest of his life delivering messages that often weren’t welcome. He was available and God used his ‘here I am’ to anoint kings and to chastise them as well.
Our call may not be as lofty, but our ‘here I am’ needs to be just as ready. If I want my grandsons to see Jesus, I need to walk in His footsteps. If I want my grown children to see why and how to serve, I must trust. If I want to hear ‘well done’ at the end, I need to say: “Pick me, I’m available.”