1 Samuel 3:1-10
From the Reformer
If I cannot go to Worms in good health, I will be carried there, sick as I am. For if the emperor calls me, I cannot doubt that it is the call of God Himself. If they desire to use violence against me, and that is very probable (for it is not for their instruction that they order me to appear), I place the matter in the Lord’s hands. He still lives and reigns who preserved the three young men in the burning fiery furnace. If He will not save me, my life is of little consequence. Let us only prevent the gospel from being exposed to the scorn of the wicked, and let us shed our blood for it, for fear they should triumph. It is not for me to decide whether my life or my death will contribute most to the salvation of all…. You may expect everything from me…except flight and recantation. Fly I cannot, and still less retract.
—from a letter of Martin Luther to the elector
Pulling It Together
When God calls, it is often, if not always, inconvenient. Samuel was confused. He did not know what to do when God called him, as is the case for many Christians. One’s own plans and the busyness of life nearly always preclude simply following God at his word. For Luther, it was not merely inconvenient, it was dangerous since God’s call could likely mean his death, due to his health and the desires of others to do him violence. Whether convenient or not, in health or sickness, ending in life or death, the believer will find that answering God is safe enough because God will be there. You will still be found in God when you say, “Here am I” or, Do with me as you will. When all else is lost you still possess it all when you are found in God.