Our scripture this morning is 1 Samuel 3:7-10.

Samuel did not yet know the Lord because he had never had a message from the Lord before. So the Lord called a third time, and once more Samuel got up and went to Eli. “Here I am. Did you call me?” Then Eli realized it was the Lord who was calling the boy. So he said to Samuel, “Go and lie down again, and if someone calls again, say, ‘Speak, Lord, your servant is listening.’” So Samuel went back to bed. And the Lord came and called as before, “Samuel! Samuel!” And Samuel replied, “Speak, your servant is listening.”

Scripture records many instances where people were called directly by God. In Genesis 22:11 Abraham is called by name twice. Exodus 3:4 records God calling “Moses! Moses!” from the burning bush. Acts 9:4 tells of the Lord saying “Saul, Saul! Why are you persecuting me?” In each case God had a special purpose for them.

Samuel’s response coached by the priest Eli is a model prayer for those who want to do God’s will. Samuel had been dedicated to the Lord’s service at birth but had never experienced His call directly. Now he accepts the Lord’s will with the response “Speak, Your servant is listening.”

We may not discern God’s call as an audible voice, but we are all called just the same. The Lord has tasks for each of us and the gifts necessary to accomplish them. If we listen carefully and learn His will for us, we may each reply in faith “Speak, Your servant is listening!”

Heavenly Father, we are sorry for the times we ignore the call You have placed on our lives. Help us to hear Your voice and respond in love. Amen.

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