(1 Samuel 9:1-24)
Donkey sweat. It’s the kind of sweat worked up looking for donkeys . . . for three days . . . with no luck.
Saul’s search for his dad’s donkeys has come up empty and he is wearing a 3-day-thick coat of donkey sweat, and maybe some donkey hunger, too. In a last ditch effort, he is persuaded to seek a prophetic word from Samuel concerning the donkeys’ whereabouts before he heads home. What can he lose?
Oh, Saul. If only you knew. The unexpected truth is that instead of losing anything, you are about to gain everything.
You are only a meal away from discovering your identity, your purpose, and your anointing.
Saul thinks he is looking for Samuel to ask about missing donkeys.
Samuel knows he is meeting Saul to give him a message from God. Samuel gets to the point – rapid fire.
“Your donkeys have been found. Join me at the top of the hill for dinner. By the way, soon all the wealth and desires of Israel will belong to you.”
By the way? That’s quite a leap from a simple dinner invitation.
Hasn’t this esteemed prophet of the Lord noticed Saul’s 3-day donkey sweat?
Saul is positive there’s a mix-up.
“Pardon me, sir. You must have the wrong man. I’m no king. I’m nobody. If you’ll just tell me where my donkeys are, I will be on my way.”
Oh, Saul. If only you knew. The unexpected truth is that this isn’t just dinner, it’s a lavish banquet and you are the guest of honor.
Samuel doesn’t appear to even register Saul’s protests as he leads him into a great hall. It must feel to Saul as though he’s stepped into a time machine. From the moment his feet cross the threshold, events begin unfolding at lightning speed. There’s no stopping them – a donkey-hunt gone crazy.
In a flash Saul is seated at the head of the table, a chef arrives tableside bearing the choicest cut of meat, and Samuel reveals that this occasion is no coincidence.
Saul must be astounded to discover that . . .
this place at the table was prepared just for him,
the best plate was saved just for him,
the banquet could not begin without him,
and he is the anointed King of Israel.
Saul. Covered in donkey sweat. Nobody special from nowhere special.
What a day. What a picture.
Is it possible that the lavish banquet is a visual of the Father’s love for you?
What if He isn’t grossed out by your donkey sweat and isn’t swayed by who you think you are? What if while you are looking for donkeys and working up a donkey hunger, He’s already prepared your place at His table?
The truth is that God sees you for who He’s created you to be.
You are anointed, desired, and valued by Him.
The food is prepared. The table is set. Won’t you step into the banquet hall, donkey sweat and all, and take your place?
What a day. What a picture.
See you next week.