We often seek God’s direction when we don’t know what to do, when we can’t find the way out of a situation, or when we need God to do something that in our power, we seem unable to do. But what about other times? You know, the times when you have options, the times when you know you can get the job, or when the loan will go through, or when you have the money, or when you know the person you like will also like you back. Do you seek God’s direction during those times?
God had told the people of Israel that getting a king was probably a bad idea. They insisted. God agreed. And they got Saul. He was tall, handsome and muscular; the type of king everybody wanted and anybody could love. But he had a few major flaws. He thought highly of himself and assumed that he could be king without God’s guidance.
In one of those instances, Saul musters up an army to fight the Philistines. Confident in his men, he marches them out to battle. They go out to meet the Philistines and Israel is outnumbered. The men panic, begin to scatter, and Saul, in order to save the situation, decides to offer a burnt offering to God. Right as he is finishing the offering, the prophet Samuel arrives and asks “What have you done.”
Caught in the act the true reason for his sacrifice to God comes to light:
“Samuel said, “What have you done?” And Saul said, “When I saw that the people were scattering from me, and that you did not come within the days appointed, and that the Philistines had mustered at Michmash, I said, ‘Now the Philistines will come down against me at Gilgal, and I have not sought the favor of the Lord.’ So I forced myself, and offered the burnt offering,” (1 Samuel 13:11-12).
Saul felt confident in his army and in his men so he didn’t think to consult with God. He assumed that because he had all the resources he needed that God would approve and he would succeed.
We often do the same thing. We consult God when we can’t do it on our own. But so many times we assume that just because we can, we should. Only to find ourselves overwhelmed, confused and looking for a way out.
Next time you have to make a decision and you have the means, the resources, and all the open doors, still go before God and pray, “God, I have the open door, I have the resources, I have the means, but is this still what You want me to do?” It may save you a lot of heartache down the line.
Posted on Wed, May 13, 2015
by Sam Petitfils