The Lord came and stood there, calling as at the other times, “Samuel! Samuel!” Then Samuel said, “Speak, for your servant is listening.” -1 Samuel 3:10
As a young man, Samuel heard God’s voice but failed to recognize it. Three times he awoke Eli instead.
How did he discover the voice was from God? It wasn’t prayer, but from the advice of a godly person. Eli recognized God was the one speaking. He then advised Samuel to answer to the Lord the next time it happened. When God did speak, Samuel was ready.
I’ve read this passage many times and have always missed the fact that the difference that allowed Samuel to recognize when God was speaking was another godly person. I’ve often thought discerning God’s voice required solitude or more Bible study. Yet sometimes what is needed in input from another person.
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Dillon Burroughs is the author and coauthor of numerous books and is handwriting a copy of all 31,173 verses of the Bible at HolyWritProject.com. Find out more about Dillon at Facebook.com/readdB or readdB.com.