“1 The Lord said to Samuel, “How long will you grieve over Saul, since I have rejected him from being king over Israel? Fill your horn with oil, and go. I will send you to Jesse the Bethlehemite, for I have provided for myself a king among his sons…6 When they came, he looked on Eliab and thought, “Surely the Lord's anointed is before him.” 7 But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.”
- I Samuel 16:1-13
Have you ever thought about how we pick our leaders?
What are the qualities we look for in choosing leaders for our country, leaders in business, leaders in churches, or even leaders in the classroom or on the ball field? What must we see before we respect and follow them?
Are we seeking someone who is the best at what they do? Someone with the most experience? Someone with the most passion? Are we looking for talent, skills, and wisdom? Are we searching for someone who seems to have all the answers? Do we find someone who is great with relationships? Are we looking for someone who can manage people and situations? Do we simply find someone we like and believe we can trust?
Samuel had been sent by God to anoint a new king after King Saul failed to obey the Lord. Saul looked like a king (a head taller than anyone else), he talked like a king, and acted like a king, but God no longer wanted him to be king. As all of Jesse’s sons were paraded in front of Samuel, he thought, “This one looks like a king.”, but God had someone different in mind.
God picks leaders based on their heart. God chooses to use people others seek to discount. As young David was finally invited to the party, he hurried to the house from the sheep fields. God declared, “He is the one.” Samuel anointed David with oil and proclaimed he would be God’s next king to lead His people. As you hang your ornament today, remember, before God seeks your looks, talents, or skills, He wants your heart!