Movement for Restoration
Mission and Vision
Our Statement of
for Family and Life (KFL)
for Family and Life (YFL)
for Family and Life (SFL)
for Family and Life (HFL)
for Family and Life (SvFL)
highest courage is to dare to be yourself in the face of adversity,
choosing right over wrong, ethics over convenience, and truth over
Travel the path of integrity without looking back, for THERE IS
NEVER A WRONG TIME TO DO THE RIGHT THING.
Bishop Soc Villegas
25 July 2007
THE WAY FORWARD IN CHRIST
CHOSEN BY GOD
Today’s reading: 1 Samuel 16:1-13
We all have been called and chosen by God to be His instrument for
some purpose. On our response depends how God’s will is done for the
life of the world.
Looking at today’s reading, we see a number of aspects that keep us
from responding to God’s call.
First is living in the past. God said to Samuel, “How long will you
grieve for Saul, whom I have rejected as king of Israel?” (1 Sm
16:1a). Long after God has moved on, we are still stuck in the past.
This could be manifest in different ways.
glory days and unable to handle challenging times that have in
effect “changed the game.”
a wound inflicted by a brother and unable to accept that person as
a needed co-worker.
comfortable in the way we have been doing things, and unable to
appreciate new ways, especially radical “out-of-the-box”
is fear. Samuel answered God, “How can I go? Saul will hear of it
and kill me.” (1 Sm 16:2). We can be paralyzed by fear of what we
already project to happen. “When he entered Bethlehem, the elders of
the city came trembling to meet him and inquired, ‘Is your visit
peaceful, O seer?’” (1 Sm 16:4b). We can be paralyzed by fear of
at all the human reasons why something cannot be done, rather than
looking at how God seems to be acting in a particular situation.
Remember: our ways and our thoughts are not God’s ways and
afraid of how responding to God might affect our personal
situation, such as finances, position, etc. Remember: we are
called to deny selves and give our all, to the point of
self-sacrificial giving of our very lives. At the same time, God
protective of what we already have or built up through the years,
which might be “threatened” by new ways. Remember: God makes
all things new, and our part is to empty ourselves so God can fill
us with whatever He wants.
is looking at the superficial and missing the essential. Samuel
“looked at Eliab and thought, ‘Surely the Lord’s anointed is
here before him.’ But the Lord said to Samuel: ‘Do not judge from
his appearance or from his lofty stature, because I have rejected him.
Not as man sees does God see, because man sees the appearance but the
Lord looks into the heart.’” (1 Sm 16:6-7).
as criteria for leadership such things as lofty stature, handsome
appearance, facility in speech, social status, financial standing,
and the like.
living in the past or fear to dictate one’s choices rather than
discerning God’s will (for a new direction) with an open mind
and a pure heart.
tragedy of looking to one’s own desires rather than what will
please God, which often requires personal sacrifices and dying to
should we respond to God, who calls us, chooses us, and sends us forth
to do His will? “Samuel did as the Lord had commanded him.” (1 Sm
16:4a). What do we do? We obey! We do not look to our personal
preferences, our comfort zones, or own human vision for the future. We
do not allow fear or uncertainty or potential radical overturning of
our lives to hinder us. We do not cling to the past but look
expectantly, and hopefully excitedly, to the future.
Now of course the big question is, what does God want of us? What is
He telling us to do? That is where true discernment comes in, and that
is not an easy thing. But even in discernment, the very aspects spoken
of above are what would form the right foundation for being able to
hear God clearly.
As we begin to hear God clearly (discernment is a continuing process),
we present ourselves before God. “Jesse sent and had the young man
brought to them.” (1 Sm 16:12a). We do not remain in our own world,
living in the past or being fearful. Rather, we open ourselves up to
what God wants to do. We stand in His presence, ready to accept
whatever He tells us.
What then happens when we do what God wants done? I just love how the
Bible describes the anointing of David.
“The Lord said, ‘There--anoint him, for this is he!’” (1 Sm
16:12c). I look at a picture of God excited (forgive my picturing God
in human terms). Remember: God has His eternal plan, and you are part
of it! God wants to implement His plan, but patiently waits on us to
see it, to accept it, and to present ourselves ready to implement it.
God is excited when now we are there before Him, awaiting our marching
orders. Now our destiny can be fulfilled. Now we can be the persons
God wants us to be. Now God can accomplish His will.
There is more. When Samuel anointed David with oil, “the spirit of
the Lord rushed upon David.” (1 Sm 16:13). There was the Holy Spirit
too, eagerly awaiting the instrument that He would use according to
God’s purpose. When the instrument was there, the Holy Spirit did
not just come in, He rushed in! I see (once again forgive me for
picturing God through human eyes) the jockeys on their steeds awaiting
the gun to rush off and begin the race. Even more mundane (forgive
me), I see the shoppers awaiting the opening of Macy’s store for the
annual big sale, and rushing in like madmen. When we present ourselves
before God ready to do His will, the Spirit immediately rushes in and
Permit me one more vision. God waits patiently. So do the angels and
saints in heaven with Him. They know what God wants to do. They
themselves have proven to be good and faithful servants. Now they
await with bated breath. When we give our yes, they whoop it up and
dance for joy with abandon. This is what happened when Mary gave her
yes. It will happen for us too.
Destined by God. Chosen by God. Empowered by God.
What else are we waiting for? God says to us, “be on your way” (1