People Panic . . . God Provides

“It’s true that the army spared the best of the sheep, goats, and cattle,” Saul admitted. “But they are going to sacrifice them to the LORD your God. We have destroyed everything else.”

Then Samuel said to Saul, “Stop! Listen to what the LORD told me last night!”

“What did he tell you?” Saul asked.

And Samuel told him, “Although you may think little of yourself, are you not the leader of the tribes of Israel? The LORD has anointed you king of Israel. And the LORD sent you on a mission and told you, ‘Go and completely destroy the sinners, the Amalekites, until they are all dead.’ Why haven’t you obeyed the LORD? Why did you rush for the plunder and do what was evil in the LORD’s sight?” (1 Samuel 15:15–19)

The tragic story of King Saul is that he never, ever fully repented of his sin. Saul's greatest concern was his image, how he looked before the people. Even after Samuel gave him a break, Saul took advantage of it and continued in that same vein until the day he took his own life. How sad is that?

Samuel has reached the end of his rope. The people elected Saul king, but he's no longer qualified. What are they to do? Israel is surrounded by enemies, and they need someone to carry the scepter. But who? Samuel didn't know and couldn't imagine. The people didn't know and had no suggestions. No one knew . . . except God.

What Samuel didn't realize—what we often don't realize—is that behind the scenes, before He ever flung the stars into space, God had today in mind. He had this very week in mind. In fact, He had you in mind. And He knew exactly what He was going to do. God is never at a loss to know what He's going to do in our situations. He knows perfectly well what is best for us. Our problem is, we don't know. And we say to Him, "Lord, if You just tell me, then I'll be in great shape. Just reveal it to me. Explain Your plan to me, and I'll count on You." But that's not faith. Faith is counting on Him when we do not know what tomorrow holds.

When a man or a woman of God fails, nothing of God fails. When a man or woman of God changes, nothing of God changes. When someone dies, nothing of God dies. When our lives are altered by the unexpected, nothing of God is altered or unexpected. It was the prophet Isaiah who wrote: "Before they call, I will answer; and while they are still speaking, I will hear" (Isaiah 65:24).

"Before you even utter a word," God promises, "I'm involved in answering. In fact, while you're speaking, I'm involved in bringing to pass the very thing I have planned from the get go."

God knows exactly what He's going to do, and nothing can restrain His bringing it to pass.

Charles R. Swindoll Tweet This

Taken from Great Days with the Great Lives by Charles Swindoll. Copyright © 2005 by Charles R. Swindoll. Used by permission of HarperCollins Christian Publishing. www.harpercollinschristian.com

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