Samuel’s word came to all Israel.
1 Samuel 4:1
That’s what we all want.
Sometimes for the right reasons. To build the Church.
Sometimes for the wrong ones. To build a crowd.
But I believe that ultimately, like Samuel, we should all want to see the Word of God flow through us to every possible person within our sphere of influence. Our entire city. Our entire country. Even the entire world.
If you’re a pastor and that’s not the desire of your soul, it’s time to find another line of work. If you’re not a pastor and it’s not the desire of your soul, it’s time to realign your perspective. Or your heart. Your profession is your pulpit. And it’s one that God wants to use to reach the people in your workplace that your pastor may never have an opportunity to preach to.
But there’s necessary groundwork that needs to be done first before God’s Word can flow through us. In the immediately preceding verse in chapter 3, it says:
The LORD continued to appear at Shiloh, and there he revealed himself to Samuel through his word.
1 Samuel 3:21
Samuel’s preparation was getting God’s Word to flow to him. God’s Word has to flow to us before it can flow through us. Before we reveal God to others, it’s essential to get a revelation of God for ourselves. And it has to happen through His Word. There are no shortcuts to 1 Samuel 4:1. You have to go through 1 Samuel 3:21 first.
Some people try. They skip to and try to go to through immediately. Their impact is minimal. Even if sometimes their numbers are great. Because then it’s just their word. And no one needs that.
In 4:1, it says that it was Samuel’s word that went out to all Israel. It sounds appealing. But it’s actually horrifying. Israel did not need Samuel’s word. They needed God’s.
And that’s just what they got. Samuel’s word was God’s Word. But only because 3:21 had happened. That’s why Samuel reached and changed the entire nation.
No ministry of any eternal significance throughout history has ever thrived without the Word flowing to it. None. Whether you’re a pastor, a business executive, or a temp, yours isn’t going to be the first.
So before you try to get the Word to flow through you, get it to flow to you. Do whatever you have to do.
Read your Bible for fifteen minutes a day.
Memorize the passage you’re preaching.
Go crazy and read through the Bible in 90 days.
Let the Word flow to you. You’ll be amazed at what happens when it then flows through you.