It’s TIME to move ‘ON’ from our DISAPPOINTMENTS: Now the Lord said to Samuel, "How long will you mourn for Saul, seeing I have rejected him from reigning over Israel? Fill your horn with oil, and go; I am sending you to Jesse the Bethlehemite. For I have provided Myself a king among his sons." (1 Sam 16:1)
Saul became a big disappointment for both God and Samuel. After the incident with the Amalekites in which Saul disobeyed the specific commands from God through Samuel, the following were the three immediate aftermaths:
- Samuel intentionally broke connection with Saul until he died. It is written that "Samuel went no more to see Saul until the day of his death" (1 Sam 15:35a). There was no longer any godly mentoring or, spiritual counseling for Saul for the rest of his life.
- Samuel grieved for Saul for a long time. "Nevertheless Samuel mourned for Saul" (1 Sam 15:35b). He must have gone through the numerous “if only” scenarios in his mind concerning Saul, and was truly sorry for him.
- God regretted that He had made Saul king over Israel. It is written that "the Lord regretted that He had made Saul king over Israel" (1 Sam 15:35c). God was surely not happy with His own decision.
What then happened was a transfer of anointing from Saul to David, which is evident from the following verses: "Then Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him in the midst of his brothers; and the Spirit of the Lord came upon David from that day forward. So Samuel arose and went to Ramah. But the Spirit of the Lord departed from Saul and a distressing spirit from the Lord troubled him." (1 Sam 16:13-14)
Martin Luther King has once remarked: “We must accept finite disappointment, but we must never lose infinite hope”. It was true that Saul was a big disappointment for everyone, for this was what Samuel had remarked to Saul when he first met him: "And on whom is all the desire of Israel? Is it not on you and on all your father's house?" (1 Sam 9:20) But now, Samuel had to hope in the wisdom of God who sent him to David in order to anoint him as the next king of Israel.
We should understand that many situations and various people in our lives will bring us disappointments, and we will tend to stop on our tracks and grieve over the matter. However, today’s scripture portion clearly counsels us that we should forget about what has already happened for we cannot control it nor can we change the past. Let these incidents be life lessons for us that we should never repeat. Rather, let’s move on from our disappointments to doing God’s will in our lives!