1 Samuel 7 opens with the ark of the Lord kept in a certain town in Israel. It has not been returned to the temple. They believe the Lord is against them still. Instead of repenting, they are lamenting.
Ever wallow in self pity instead of turning to the Lord in repentance?
When you’re in a hardship, do you complain to the Lord and feel sorry for yourself? Do you think it’s unfair that you have to suffer through whatever it is? That’s acting like our just God is unfair because He is in control.
Our lamenting, our sadness, should only be to turn us to repentance, to turn us to God. We should turn to Him with thanksgiving and praise, asking for mercy and grace to be brought safely through and closer to Him and more like Jesus on the other side.
Israel spends twenty years lamenting. This gives Samuel the chance to grow up.
If the historian was right about Samuel being twelve when the word of the Lord was first revealed to him, then that would put him around 33 years old when he steps up and tells Israel to put away their other gods and calls all of Israel together to turn to the Lord.
He offers a sacrifice. He prays and God accepts the offering. I believe that means that fire from heaven fell to consume the sacrifice.
Do you remember that the temple altar burned with the fire of the Lord? It wasn’t lit by the priests. Sacrifices are only accepted through holy fire.
Then God fights on their behalf and gives them the victory.
Moses set up a stone and named it Ebenezer, as a memorial that the Lord had been their help.
I’ve done a lesson already on memorials, using Exodus 12:14.
Remember that the Lord wants to be your God, your Helper. Don’t turn inward in your times of need. Turn to Him and find help.