Monday, November 3, 2008

Samson - The Party's Just Beginning

Judges 13:12-23 So Manoah asked him, "When your words are fulfilled, what is to be the rule for the boy's life and work?" The angel of the LORD answered, "Your wife must do all that I have told her. She must not eat anything that comes from the grapevine, nor drink any wine or other fermented drink nor eat anything unclean. She must do everything I have commanded her." Manoah said to the angel of the LORD, "We would like you to stay until we prepare a young goat for you."The angel of the LORD replied, "Even though you detain me, I will not eat any of your food. But if you prepare a burnt offering, offer it to the LORD." (Manoah did not realize that it was the angel of the LORD.)Then Manoah inquired of the angel of the LORD, "What is your name, so that we may honor you when your word comes true?"He replied, "Why do you ask my name? It is beyond understanding. " Then Manoah took a young goat, together with the grain offering, and sacrificed it on a rock to the LORD. And the LORD did an amazing thing while Manoah and his wife watched: As the flame blazed up from the altar toward heaven, the angel of the LORD ascended in the flame. Seeing this, Manoah and his wife fell with their faces to the ground. When the angel of the LORD did not show himself again to Manoah and his wife, Manoah realized that it was the angel of the LORD. "We are doomed to die!" he said to his wife. "We have seen God!"But his wife answered, "If the LORD had meant to kill us, he would not have accepted a burnt offering and grain offering from our hands, nor shown us all these things or now told us this."

The interaction between Samson's parents are just so amusing. The Lord has appeared again to the mom and she gets the husband and he asks the question, "What is our son supposed to do for a living?" That's a valid question. One we would all have. One we probably have today. What will my kids make of themselves? What does God want for them? How should I direct them? But the amazing thing is this: The Lord only repeats what He's already said to Samson's mom. The rest is up to God.

We are forever doubting the power of our God. He gives us His word with His guidelines and the rest is up to Him. We just have to listen along the way as He leads us. It is not up to us to determine what our kids will be, we can only pray that God will guide them to make the right choices. The same holds true for us - we cannot possibly foretell the outcome of our day - but we can ask God to make us aware of what He needs for us to do during that day.

Toward the end, when Manoah realized that it was, in fact, the Lord that they had been talking to, he immediately begins fretting and fearing for his life - thinking he would be destroyed. Now it's the wife who lends the voice of common sense: Why would He tell us we're going to raise a child for His calling and then kill us? Again, so applicable to our own lives. . .

God has a purpose for us. We don't have to know what it is to be usable by God. It could be as big as an urging to head to Africa to minister to those who have never heard the Word or as simple as voting at the election polls. We have an obligation as Christians to seek out God's purpose for us - a daily asking and wanting to be used of Him. His mission is great and I'm excited to be a part of it - I hope you are too.

3 wonderful insights:

Kay Martin said...

Great insight. Recently I've had some folks call me for advice. They got pretty frustrated with my repetitive phrase, "What do you believe God is telling you to do?" I know they wanted my opinion but where I stand now I'm convinced we all need to discover what God is saying and doing and line up with that totally. If Samson's parents could have grasped this sooner wonder how the story might be different?

Edie said...

I like what Kay Martin said. "I'm convinced we all need to discover what God is saying and doing and line up with that totally." That really hits the nail on the head.

I also love the common sense of Manoah's wife. There is a balance between doing what God says even if it appears not to be logical while not throwing out common sense all together.

sailorcross said...

Hi Dorothy!!

I've been out of commission for a few days, and I'm playing catch up with Samson. I see you've been to visit my "Love Dare". This has been very hard for me in a lot of ways--a lot of painful self-examination--but it all comes down these words that you have written--"The rest is up to God."

Thank you for encouraging me along.

Moving on to the next day!

Beth