Sermons

Summary: Saul thought he was just chasing donkeys. What he was about to discover was his real destiny.

I Samuel 9:2-6, 15-17, 20

[2] [Kish’s] son Saul was the most handsome man in Israel—head and shoulders taller than anyone else in the land. [3] One day Kish's donkeys strayed away, and he told Saul, ‘Take a servant with you, and go look for the donkeys.’ [4] So Saul took one of the servants and traveled through the hill country of Ephraim, the land of Shalishah, the Shaalim area, and the entire land of Benjamin, but they couldn't find the donkeys anywhere. [5] Finally, they entered the region of Zuph, and Saul said to his servant, ‘Let's go home. By now my father will be more worried about us than about the donkeys!’ [6] But the servant said, ‘I've just thought of something! There is a man of God who lives here in this town. He is held in high honor by all the people because everything he says comes true. Let's go find him. Perhaps he can tell us which way to go.’

[15] Now the LORD had told Samuel the previous day, [16] ‘About this time tomorrow I will send you a man from the land of Benjamin. Anoint him to be the leader of my people, Israel. He will rescue them from the Philistines, for I have looked down on my people in mercy and have heard their cry.’ [17] When Samuel saw Saul, the LORD said, ‘That's the man I told you about! He will rule my people.’ [20]’… don't worry about those donkeys that were lost three days ago, for they have been found. And I am here to tell you that you and your family are the focus of all Israel's hopes.’”

Saul thought he was just chasing donkeys. He was just obeying the word of His father and chasing after lost donkeys. But on his way – the word of the Lord came to him through the prophet Samuel that he would be the next ruler of all of Israel.

Now many of you know the story behind God calling Saul to be king. God wanted to give all of Israel a priest – a Godly leader – but all that Israel wanted was a king. So, God gave them what they wanted by anointing Saul – who turns out to be a very ungodly ruler. Saul started well – but ended up dishonoring God.

This is where our text comes in – while Saul is chasing donkeys – God is trying to set him up for his destiny.

Do you feel that way? Do you feel that –rather than chasing your dream – you’re just chasing donkeys? Does it seem like you’re going around in circles going nowhere? Are you on the permanent ‘rocking-chair-vacation’ – always moving but going nowhere? Are you chasing donkeys when you should be walking into your destiny?

Here is Saul – the son of a mighty man of valor, a mighty warrior; Saul was a head taller than all of the other men in Israel and was very handsome. His family was wealthy as well. So, he had everything going for him – and yet he finds himself chasing donkeys.

His pedigree should have granted him something greater, but he was chasing lost donkeys. With his pedigree, we would have expected him to go out and kill lions or fight with the enemies of Israel. Instead he is sent out on the great donkey chase caper. There suddenly comes this huge canyon between Saul’s preparation and his assignment.

Have you ever felt that way? Have you ever felt as though you had all of the makings for greatness –or so you thought – but here you are chasing after donkeys?

The thing I want to share with you this morning is this – don’t assume that the donkeys you are chasing are a bad thing. It may not be the most enjoyable job in the world but there could be a purpose for your chase!

Think of this: Biblically, a donkey was a vehicle by which heavy burdens were carried around. Saul was sent to pursue something that carried burdens for others. Sometimes the destiny of our lives can be determined by the burdens that we find ourselves in pursuit of.

Donkeys were a means that some farmers used to plow the land. Saul was sent to pursue something that was going to involve a harvest. Sometimes the destiny of our lives can be determined by the kind of harvest that we are attempting to overtake. It can be long and monotonous and often a very frustrating endeavor; but rewarding in the end.

Saul was sent to pursue something that could not even reproduce itself. It was sterile and fruitless. Sometimes there are seasons of life in which there is nothing productive coming to pass. Destiny plays just as much a role in this time as it does in the great times. Sometimes God is using sterile situations, unanswered prayers, and dead-ends to prove our faithfulness to Him & His grace to us! Don’t look at chasing donkeys as a dead end – no matter how unfruitful or how futile it seems.

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