What does it say? After Israel fully committed their hearts to the Lord, He gave them victory over the Philistines. Samuel set up a stone near Mizpah as a remembrance of the Lord’s help.
What does it mean? Everything was going well. The ark had returned to Israel, and Samuel led the people to clean out their idols and commit to worship only the Lord. But fear gripped their hearts when the Philistines gathered to attack. The children of Israel responded by looking to the Lord for help, fully convinced that He was able to rescue them. Asking Samuel to “cry out” to the Lord was more than a prayer request; it was a desperate plea in recognition that God was their only hope. The Ebenezer stone was a monument of the victory and a reminder of God’s intervention in their lives.
How should I respond? Staying spiritually on track isn’t insurance against life’s troubles. However, having a heart that is fully committed to the Lord is the key to responding to sudden difficulty. Where do you turn when desperation pours over you like a tidal wave? The same God who rescued Israel from the Philistines still intervenes in the lives of His children. No situation is too overwhelming for Him. What is causing you fear today? The Lord is waiting for you to “cry out” to Him, believing that He is able to handle it. His answer may not be immediate, but it will come. He is always at work behind the scenes of your life.