How to Choose?

Do you remember the story in Samuel about the Lord choosing the next King for the nation?

So it happened, when they had come, he looked at Eliab [the eldest son] and thought, “Surely the Lord’s anointed is before Him.” But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look at his appearance or at the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the Lord sees not as man sees; for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” Then Jesse called Abinadab and had him pass before Samuel. But Samuel said, “The Lord has not chosen this one either.”

1 Samuel 16: 6-8 AMP

Jesse had eight sons in all. He presented the first seven to Samuel, but God told Samuel not any of them were to be king. Jesse guessed wrong. Samuel guessed wrong. Only the Lord God knew the one He had chosen. The one whose heart He had read and found to be the best for the position. Nope, not by appearance, height, handsomeness, physical stature. New Jewish Bible reads “Adonai looks at the heart.” Douay-Rheims 1899 American Edition says “the Lord beholdeth the heart.”

A man after God’s own heart (Acts 13:22)

Our God is omnipotent, omniscient and omnipresent. He alone can read hearts. How dare we presume to judge others without this sovereign ability?

When it comes to serious decision making I would hope you use something less like this childhood game and more like prayer. If we are uncertain what to choose it is usually much better to wait on the guidance of the Lord than to move out in our own strength, with our guess. Patience is difficult for most everyone, but it pays off when serving the Living God. Authorities believe that David waited about 15 years to rule as King over Israel. (

As the Living God reads your heart He has plans for you. It might take months or years for those plans to become clear. We are told repeatedly to cling to Him by faith and with thanksgiving. He will use you. Remember since He could use Balaam’s donkey, (Numbers 22:21-29) He can surely use you in His kingdom work!

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