Read about the Lord calling Samuel in 1 Samuel 3:1-10.
Sharing this story with young children:
- You may want to let children dramatize this story as you read it a second time.
- Then briefly retell the rest of the story—what the Lord told Samuel and that he listened to the Lord.
Ideas for discussion
- The Lord called Samuel when he was a young boy helping Eli, the priest, in the tabernacle.
- How many times did the Lord call Samuel during the night? (three times)
- Who did Samuel think was calling to him? (Eli the high priest)
- How did Samuel answer the Lord the third time? (“Speak, Lord, for Your servant hears.”)
- The Lord doesn’t call to us as He did with Samuel, but He does speak to us in His Word. By means of the Word, the Lord teaches us how to follow Him and offers us spiritual light.
- We can “hear” the Lord’s Word when it is read aloud or figuratively, when we read the Word for ourselves and “hear” the Lord speaking to us. Many passages in the Word speak of hearing the Word of the Lord. Here are a few:
- “Incline your ear, and come to Me. Hear, and your soul shall live” (Isaiah 55:3)
- “He who has ears to hear, let him hear!” (Matthew 11:15).
- “Blessed are those who hear the word of God and keep it!” (Luke 11:28).
- To really hear the Word implies obeying it as well. The Lord wants us to willingly obey Him because this will bring us true happiness.
- If we respond to His call by trying to serve Him in our life, then He can help us understand the teachings of His Word more and more clearly. The more we grow in this understanding, the more we will be able to see the Lord’s living presence in His Word.
- “It is through the Word that the Lord is present with a person and conjoined with him, for the Lord is the Word, and as it were speaks with the person in it” (Doctrine of the Sacred Scripture 78).
Read more about the Lord calling Samuel:
- “The Call of Samuel” by Jeremy Simons (ages 4-6)
This story is beautifully illustrated for young children.
- “Hearing the Lord” by David R. Simons (ages 7-14)
The Lord constantly calls people in His Word, but only those with a willing spirit really hear Him.
- “If Anyone Has an Ear, Let Him Hear” by Philip B. Schnarr (ages 18 and up)
Explains how we hear the Lord calling to us in His Word.
- “Samuel” by Walter E. Orthwein (ages 18 and up)
The Lord calls everyone, speaking to us individually, in a way accommodated to each person’s ability to respond.
Projects and activities for various ages:
- The Call of Samuel Video (ages 2-6)
A simple, reverent retelling of the birth of Samuel and how the Lord called him as a young child.
- The Lord Calls to Samuel (ages 3-6)
Picture Samuel sleeping and awake, then re-enact the story.
- Speak Lord, for Your Servant Hears Coloring Page by Mary S. Cooper
Shows Samuel kneeling by his bed, ready to listen to the Lord.
- The Lord Calls Samuel Song Video (ages 4-14)
A beautiful song telling the story of the Lord calling Samuel when he was a child living with Eli.
- The Call of Samuel Diorama (ages 7-14)
Backdrop and figures of Eli and Samuel to color and assemble into a diorama of the Lord calling Samuel.
- “Samuel, Samuel!” song written by Lori S. Odhner
This song tells the story of the Lord calling Samuel.
- Eli and Samuel Coloring Page by Marguerite L. Acton (ages 7-14)
Shows Samuel wondering whether it was Eli who called him.
- Samuel’s Call—A Script for a Play (ages 7-14)
Dramatize the story of the Lord calling to Samuel.
- What Is the Lord Trying to Tell You? a spiritual task by David C. Roth
The Lord is speaking to us in His Word, guiding us in our lives and answering our sincere questions.
- Reading the Word with an Open Mind and a Willing Heart (ages 15 and up)
How can we become more open to the Lord’s teaching?
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