1 Samuel 8:4-11, 16-20
Then all the elders of Israel gathered together and came to Samuel at Ramah, and said to him, “You are old and your sons do not follow in your ways; appoint for us, then, a king to govern us, like other nations.” But the thing displeased Samuel when they said, “Give us a king to govern us.” Samuel prayed to the Lord, and the Lord said to Samuel, “Listen to the voice of the people in all that they say to you; for they have not rejected you, but they have rejected me from being king over them. Just as they have done to me, from the day I brought them up out of Egypt to this day, forsaking me and serving other gods, so also they are doing to you. Now then, listen to their voice; only—you shall solemnly warn them, and show them the ways of the king who shall reign over them.” So Samuel reported all the words of the Lord to the people who were asking him for a king. He said, “These will be the ways of the king who will reign over you: he will take your sons and appoint them to his chariots and to be his horsemen, and to run before his chariots; He will take your male and female slaves, and the best of your cattle and donkeys, and put them to his work. He will take one-tenth of your flocks, and you shall be his slaves. And in that day you will cry out because of your king, whom you have chosen for yourselves; but the Lord will not answer you in that day.” But the people refused to listen to the voice of Samuel; they said, “No! but we are determined to have a king over us, so that we also may be like other nations, and that our king may govern us and go out before us and fight our battles.”
Food For Thought:
When I read this passage of Scripture, I think of change. We humans don’t like change much. We resist change. We want everything to stay the same as it has always been. I had this realization one day not too long ago when I was looking in the mirror. I found my first gray hair and I started freaking out. I probably caused another 10 or so just by my sheer reaction to that one hair. I didn’t like what I saw in the mirror because it was change staring back at me. It was, “I am not that young vivacious woman I used to be.” I am in my mid-thirties now. I am not 22 anymore. My body gets tired when I run around constantly. I can’t pull all-nighters anymore. Change, it’s hard. But we need to change because otherwise we wouldn’t be evolving. We would be stagnated in our 20 year-old selves.
Unlike earthly kings, you, O Lord, are ever steadfast and faithful. You sent us your Son, Jesus the Christ,
to rule over us, not as a tyrant, but as a gentle shepherd. Keep us united and strong in faith, that we may always know your presence in our lives, and when you call us home, may we enter your heavenly kingdom where you live and reign for ever and ever. In your precious name we pray, Amen.