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Demanding
Posted on August 20, 2010

In 1 Samuel 28 we read a really sad episode in the life of the first king of Israel, Saul. You may already know the story. Saul was in a pitched conflict with the Philistines. He was outnumbered. He was desperate for guidance. His mentor, Samuel, from whom he received a harsh rebuke and was estranged, had died. He went to the Lord but the Lord was silent.


Saul got in trouble with God because he did not trust God. Nearly from the beginning of his reign he was unable to trust, to wait on God. This attitude shows up first in I Samuel 13:8 – 15. It is humorous to read, especially verse 12. Saul “forces” himself to disobey God and make the offering that Samuel was to make because, from his perspective, he needed that offering to insure his victory over his enemy the Philistines. Wow. What a study in self justification. Saul panicked when he saw the people leaving him. He focused on the circumstances rather than the command of God. He took matters into his own hands. He fixed the problem.


I cannot count the number of times I have fallen into that trap. I see a circumstance that “needs fixin’” and I take control, step in, overstep my bounds. All because I can see the problem and the solution and have a strong bias to act. After all, I am a gifted leader. Problem is, God may have a different tack in mind, and like Saul, I neglect to ask. Or worse, at some real level I do not expect God to act to rectify the situation – after all “God helps those who help themselves,” right? (I defy you to find that in your Bible.)


The issue here is certainly not that I should stand idly by and not engage in the solutions to problems that occur. The issue is why and when I should act. Am I demanding a solution? If so that is dangerous ground on which to stand. Have I asked if I should be involved? If not I am launching into action that the Lord has not directed. That is at best not pleasing to Him and at worst outright disobedience, that is sin.


But Saul’s behavior did not get better. He did not learn from this mistake.


PS. One of the things that we really covet is your prayer for this ministry. We send out on Mondays a weekly intercession request. If you would commit to pray for us please click here to join our intercession team.


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