Read – 1 Samuel 10
Focus on verse 6-7
Our lives are full of life-changing experiences. Some of them are pleasant, others are painfully difficult, all of them have the potential to make us either better, or bitter. In every case, it is impossible to return to the way we were before that experience. The only option we have is to adjust to the new normal. The degree to which our lives change is typically proportional to the intensity of the experience — some a huge and dramatic, others barely noticeable.
In today’s reading Saul has one of those more dramatic, experiences that result in a significant change in his life. Samuel tells Saul that he will have an experience with the Spirit of the Lord that will turn him into another man.
The Spirit of the Lord will come upon you in power, and you will prophesy with them; and you will be changed into a different person. 7 Once these signs are fulfilled, do whatever your hand finds to do, for God is with you.(v. 6-7)
All the things that Samuel prophesies over Saul come to pass, and Saul is changed by his experience, though when it comes time for him to be named king he is hiding in the baggage. The Spirit of the Lord can and does empower men to do things that they could not or would not ordinarily do. It would seem also that the Spirit at times uses even those who are somewhat passive or even resistant to His control in their lives. Saul was such a one. There were times when he sought the Lord; there were times when he hid from Him. In the end of Saul’s reign the text tells us the Lord withdraws His Spirit from Saul and an evil spirit takes its place — situation that presents some thorny issues for systematic theologians.
The point here, however, is that when we encounter the Spirit of the Living God through an experience that is undeniably real, we are changed. We can never go back to being what we were before. The change typically is a good change, but for some is an unexpected and perhaps even disturbing change that takes place. If the experience is a true encounter with God however, the result is that the fruit of the Spirit becomes more evident than it did prior to the encounter. The fruit of the Spirit being Love — which is manifest in us in the form of joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Gal 5:22). If this kind of love is not evident after the experience – it would be wise to be suspect of exactly what kind of experience we have had.