1 Samuel 3:10-13
And the LORD came and stood, calling as at other times, “Samuel! Samuel!” And Samuel said, “Speak, for your servant hears.” Then the LORD said to Samuel, “Behold, I am about to do a thing in Israel at which the two ears of everyone who hears it will tingle. On that day I will fulfill against Eli all that I have spoken concerning his house, from beginning to end. And I declare to him that I am about to punish his house forever, for the iniquity that he knew, because his sons were blaspheming God, and he did not restrain them.
Scripture quite often chides men for not truly listening. When people do nothing with what they hear from God, their capacity for listening diminishes. “Be doers of the Word,” James presses, “and not merely hearers who delude themselves.”
In this chapter, Samuel is a boy serving in the priestly house of Eli. Eli and his two biological sons (Hophni & Phineas) had ignored God’s word and God’s voice for so long that God halted further attempts at tuning them in. Still, God had something He wanted to say to His leaders and his people He needed a set of ears that would do more than just take in information. Samuel’s heart was ready.
Years later, it’s clear that Samuel never forgot the wonder, the joy, and the importance of clearly hearing the voice of the Lord. Through repeated times of interaction, Samuel and God were on face-to-face terms with each other, not unlike Moses’ experience. God entrusts His word with those who will obey it, regardless of how difficult carrying through with obedience might be.
To be sure, today, you and I are also invited to have ears tuned to God’s calling, to His voice and speaking into our life situations. Shall we not echo Samuel’s eager reply, “Speak, for your servant hears!”? Music to God’s ears!