Eli and Samuel: Listening for God

Scripture Reading — 1 Samuel 3:1-10

Eli told Samuel, “Go and lie down, and if he calls you, say, ‘Speak, LORD, for your servant is listening.’” — 1 Samuel 3:9

Samuel was confused. He heard a voice and thought it was his mentor, Eli, calling for him. He kept going to Eli’s room until it Eli realized that the voice was God trying to get Samuel’s attention.

Listening for God is an important life skill, and God is not silent. We live in a noisy culture that often speaks in ways that are contrary to God’s voice. It can be difficult to hear God if we are more in tune with the voice of this world.

As we listen for God, we will be more in tune with his leading in our lives. Eli mentored Samuel by teaching him how to respond to God’s voice: “Speak, Lord, for your servant is listening”—in other words, “I am ready to hear what you have to say, and I am ready to obey!”

God speaks to us in many ways. He speaks through creation, giving testimony to his faithfulness and creativity. He speaks through his Word, where we come to understand his salvation and purpose for us. He speaks through wise mentors in our lives. He speaks through life situations, opening and closing doors. God speaks by his Holy Spirit, equipping us with gifts and passions to use for service in his kingdom.

How are you experiencing God’s leading in your life? Are you listening attentively for God’s voice?


Lord, make us people who are in tune with your voice. Let us seek your leading throughout our life. Equip us to fol-low your direction, we pray. In Jesus’ name, Amen.


Devotion topics: Listening, God, God's Plan