Letters to a Samuel Generation: An Introduction

While I work hard to finish Seeds 2, I’ve hit “pause” on new Matthew commentary for this blog. Until I’m able to resume, I wanted to share from an older-but-still-oh-so-relevant work with you. For the next six weeks I’ll be posting from Letters to a Samuel Generationa book about knowing the mind and heart of God.

When I was seventeen and bent on changing the world, I decided to start a youth organization. I called it Samuel Generation International. We were going to be a holy generation, riding with Jesus to the ends of the earth.

Well. I learned very quickly that the world didn’t need another youth organization. It didn’t need me to change it, either. What it did need was more of Jesus, and the way it was going to see more of Him was if we as Christians loved Him more—knew Him better—believed and trusted in Him with all our hearts. And that would only happen as He revealed Himself.

He was doing that work of revelation in me, and I realized that I could share it. It was Christmas, the year 2000, and I sat down and tentatively began to write a reflection on God’s heart in sending Christ to us. I copied it into my email, hit “send,” and started on an amazing journey.

For the next four years I continued to write articles which I hoped would glorify Jesus and encourage His people, whom I loved, and still love, very deeply. Readers passed my “Letters” along, and soon they were going to mission stations and Native American reserves, pastors and homeschooling moms and dads, teenagers and elderly saints on four different continents.

That humbles me, and is not a credit to me at all.

The truth is that God’s people really do love Him, and I’ve had the privilege to share in and encourage that love from a young age. This collection reflects not only my heart’s cry, but yours as well: that we would love Him more deeply, know Him more truly, and worship Him more freely.

Though these letters owe much (including their name) to the prophet Samuel, that heart’s cry was perhaps best expressed by the young man he anointed as king.

“My soul longeth, yea, even fainteth for the courts of the LORD: my heart and my flesh crieth out for the living God. Yea, the sparrow hath found an house, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may lay her young, even thine altars, O LORD of hosts, my King, and my God…

“I had rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God, than to dwell in the tents of wickedness. For the LORD God is a sun and shield: the LORD will give grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly. O LORD of hosts, blessed is the man that trusteth in thee.”

David, Psalm 84:2-3, 10-12

May God bless you as you read, and draw you closer to Himself.


Photo by Cameron Venti on Unsplash




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