Gordon Green, M.Div., M.A. Counseling
Concluding our four-part series that examines Samuel’s anointing of David (1 Samuel 16:1-13), this month were are looking at the final step to anointing the next generation: rely on the power of the of Holy Spirit (verse 13). The author tells us that the Spirit of the Lord indwelled David and that Samuel’s work was completed: And the Spirit of the Lord rushed upon David from that day forward. And Samuel rose up and went to Ramah (ESV). In our Western Christian culture, we can often hear a message of “try harder” that leads to striving, the appearance of failing, and consequential feelings of guilt. But if we keep a proper perspective of who does the “saving” and what is our role, then the burden is lifted from our shoulders. In other words, if the Holy Spirit is not “rushing” on the person to whom we witness, then he or she is like the “seed that fell on the hard path” (Mark 4:4 and 15). Our job is to be faithful, not to measure success. In God’s economy, what may appear to be a failure in the world’s eyes may be right on target with His unfolding plan.
As we approach this Christmas season, I am reminded that a virgin teenager from a common family was told that she would give birth to the Son of the God. Her response? “How will this be, since I am a virgin?” (Luke 1:34, ESV) And the angel, Gabriel, answered: “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be called holy—the Son of God” (Luke 1:35, ESV). Whether it’s the birth story of Christ or the anointing of Israel’s next king, we read time and again through the biblical narrative that any work of greatness must come through the power of the Holy Spirit. With this in mind, may the wonder of the Christ-child, who grew in wisdom, favor, and the power of the Holy Spirit, bring peace and goodwill to all of us who are anointed by him. Amen!