1 Samuel 9:1-10
9 There was a Benjamite, a man of standing, whose name was Kish son of Abiel, the son of Zeror, the son of Bekorath, the son of Aphiah of Benjamin. 2 Kish had a son named Saul, as handsome a young man as could be found anywhere in Israel, and he was a head taller than anyone else. 3 Now the donkeys belonging to Saul’s father Kish were lost, and Kish said to his son Saul, “Take one of the servants with you and go and look for the donkeys.” 4 So he passed through the hill country of Ephraim and through the area around Shalisha, but they did not find them. They went on into the district of Shaalim, but the donkeys were not there. Then he passed through the territory of Benjamin, but they did not find them. 5 When they reached the district of Zuph, Saul said to the servant who was with him, “Come, let’s go back, or my father will stop thinking about the donkeys and start worrying about us.” 6 But the servant replied, “Look, in this town there is a man of God; he is highly respected, and everything he says comes true. Let’s go there now. Perhaps he will tell us what way to take.” 7 Saul said to his servant, “If we go, what can we give the man? The food in our sacks is gone. We have no gift to take to the man of God. What do we have?” 8 The servant answered him again. “Look,” he said, “I have a quarter of a shekel of silver. I will give it to the man of God so that he will tell us what way to take.” 9 (Formerly in Israel, if someone went to inquire of God, they would say, “Come, let us go to the seer,” because the prophet of today used to be called a seer.) 10 “Good,” Saul said to his servant. “Come, let’s go.” So they set out for the town where the man of God was.
This is the first time we encounter Saul, who will be Israel’s first king. Knowing this, I am wondering what kind of a man Saul is that God would choose him. Would he demonstrate clear leadership characteristics such as initiative, confidence and wise decision making skills that would indicate he would be a good choice?
Not really. We find him at home, his dad sending him out to find his lost donkeys. Saul takes a servant with him in order to search for them. When they can’t find the donkey’s Saul says they should go back home because he doesn’t want his dad worrying about him. But his servant has another idea: let’s ask the man of God. (Yay for people like this who point us towards God).
Interestingly, Saul responds “Yes, let’s go!” I think it is this response that indicates Saul’s potential: he has an open heart to the things of God. It wasn’t his wealth or height that impressed God. It was because Saul had a soft spot towards God and listened to his servant and was willing to seek the prophet’s advice. Having an open heart towards God is something God can work with.
Father God, I thank you that You look beyond our circumstances and look to our hearts. May we keep our hearts open and soft towards You and keep trusting in You.
Written by Gab Martin