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1 Samuel 9

May 30, 2023

Groundworks Ministries Daily Bible Challenge

“So they went up toward the city. Saul and his attendant were entering the city when they saw Samuel coming toward them on his way to the high place.”

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1 Samuel 9

“So they went up toward the city. Saul and his attendant were entering the city when they saw Samuel coming toward them on his way to the high place. Now the day before Saul’s arrival, the Lord had informed Samuel, ‘At this time tomorrow I will send you a man from the land of Benjamin. Anoint him ruler over My people Israel. He will save them from the hand of the Philistines because I have seen the affliction of My people, for their cry has come to Me.’ When Samuel saw Saul, the Lord told Him, ‘Here is the man I told you about; he will rule over My people.’” 1 Samuel 9:14-17 (HCSB)

“Providence” is God’s way of providing for the needs of His people. In a wonderful, strange, mysteriously unpredictable way, the Lord rules His world and sustains His people. And He does it frequently by going over, under, around, through, or in spite of the most common stuff in our lives. He works His will, even when it is against our will. God is always deliberately working, even though we are unaware of His presence. That is why it is of utmost importance to align ourselves with Him. He always wins.

Saul’s rise to power all seemed so casual; who would know it was planned? God wove people & situations together so well that it looks like we are dealing with what organically appeared rather than what was ordained: lose some donkeys, find a kingdom.

The ignorant onlooker might say that Saul was lucky. He was in the right place at the right time. Perhaps, they would say Saul’s charisma overwhelmed an aged prophet desperate for a successor. But God tells us He orchestrated everything. He allowed the donkeys to go missing; He prompted Saul’s father to send Saul after them; He told Samuel He was sending Israel’s king, and in the moment, He told Samuel exactly who that king would be. Saul is detached, designated, and disclosed by God.

The Lord’s providence not only operates in the affairs of major figures in salvation history; He also directs our paths.

“A man’s heart plans his way, but the Lord directs His steps.” Proverbs 16:9 (NKJV)

“Man’s steps are ordained by the LORD, how then can man understand his way?” Proverbs 20:24 (NASB)

So, providence is not the exclusive privilege of some kingdom elite; it extends to each of His people, no matter how apparently common. However, He may not let you in on the secret. You may see traces of what He has been doing much later as you look back, but in the present, you may be just as in the dark as Saul was. If so, you must continue searching for your lost donkeys (or whatever task God has given you). But do so, knowing God is leading, teaching you along the way how to accomplish the things He has prepared for you. It is not as if our relationship with Him is not dynamic. There is a call and response. Our choices make a difference, yet we choose to follow His Word, knowing He does not need us. Rather, He loves us and chooses to interact with us. Our participation in the process is to seek His Word, trusting in Him as we obey and share it.

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©Steve Wiggins 2021

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