So you might be a title confused why personal worship this week isn’t in 1 Samuel. I was honestly a little confused too. This Sunday we celebrate Mother’s Day and because we are following along with what the church does for personal worship we are doing Judges 13.
Mother’s Day is interesting for me. I always have a lot of emotions, happy, sad, confused, uncomfortable, you name it. Most of you know, but those that don’t, my mom died when I was 14 years old. It was January 9th, 2002 that my mom was in a car accident and lost her life. That was the worst day of my life. I have gone through a lot of crap before and after that moment but that tops them all. Because my mom was a single mother it was just her and I. She was my best friend, I didn’t really know any different. My mom, Abbie, was the most Godly woman I have ever known. She woke up every morning at around 5:30 (yikes!) and read her Bible and journaled. She was an avid journaler and I am so blessed to have all of her journals from when she was a teenager to just a couple days before she died. They are my most prized possessions.
Even though that day was the hardest for me it has taught me so much. I would have to say if I could wish that she hadn’t been killed I don’t know if I could. The reason being is that I really feel that God showed me himself that day. In that one moment after I had been told that my mom had died, I wanted to scream and honestly die. I didn’t think life could go on, my world would be forever changed. Then God did something amazing, He whispered softly into my ear “it’s ok, I’ve got you” and that penetrated my heart. It’s sounds crazy but from then on I knew that my mother’s death wouldn’t be in vain. Jesus had a plan that was so far bigger than me and my mom. So Mother’s Day is special and hard for me all at the same time. I love to think about my mom but it also makes me sad that I can’t celebrate her with me and I also rejoice because my mom is in her true home where she always longed to be.
I know that some of you have amazing Godly and faithful mom’s and others of you don’t but please celebrate them. Recognize the selfless acts they do for you and everyone else. Think of all the times they’ve come through for you by maybe simply cooking you dinner or cheering you on at a game. Our mom’s deserve to be served, loved, and celebrated.
Now we can look at Judges 13 for personal worship.
I had to ask myself 1. How does this fit into the story of the king?
and 2. How is this relevant for my life and yours?
Keep these questions in mind as you go through the chapter.
Day 1: Read Judges 13. Start off by writing any questions or thoughts in your journal that you might have while reading.
> This will hopefully bring you back to 1 Samuel 1. That was about Samuel’s mom, Hannah. She was barren and she cried out to God to give her a son. She poured herself out before him. Hannah even promised that she would give her son, Samuel, willingly to the Lord if he fulfilled her request.
This time around though it’s a little different. A messenger of God appears to Manoah’s wife (I’d like to know why her name is NEVER mentioned). The messenger promises this woman that can’t have children because she’s sterile, a child. The angel of the Lord requires her to give her son to God.
> Right off the bat in verse 1 we read that AGAIN the Israelites messed up. Because of that God gives them over to the Philistines for 40 years! You should be thinking, “don’t the Philistines hate the Israelites?!” Yes, they have always been enemies. This is not good for Israel. They are once again captives. God has been so faithful to them. Notice that this is before David and everything that we’ve been looking at.
But from what you know about Genesis – Judges recall God’s faithfulness in the Israelites lives.
*saying to them, I am your God and you are my people
*giving them Moses to take them out of Egypt where they were slaves
*parting the Red Sea and killing Pharaoh’s army in the process
*The Ten Commandments
*giving them the Ark, this contained the presence of God
Hopefully you get the picture. The Israelites experienced the greatness of God and still did their own thing. No again they would need someone to rescue them and of course God provides because they are his chosen people.
“If there had been no sin, there would have needed no Savior; but sin was suffered abound, that grace might much more abound.” -Matthew Henry Commentary
If that doesn’t make you want to adore God all day everyday, I don’t know what will!
> Recall God’s faithfulness in your life. Write it in your journal.
Day 2: Read Judges 13. This angel of the Lord was the Lord himself, the one that would be ultimately the great deliverer.
The Lord concerned himself in the matter not for the Danites or Manoah and his wife but so that his people would have a deliverer. This messenger pointed to the one that would come. He pointed to his very own birth that would also be foretold by and angel.
Take note that the promised deliverer of Israel must be fully devoted to God and an example of holiness.
Samson’s mother would have to deny herself and earthy pleasures. She had to make herself ready for the promised one. The promise of her son tested her faith and the denial of herself tested her obedience. God required both from her. He requires faith and obedience from us as well.
> When we look at the greatness of God and see all he’s done for us, which is more than our little brains could ever fully comprehend, we see our lack of faithfulness to Him.
> Confess your disobedience and lack of faith in your life to God. In what areas in your life do you need to be obedient in what God is calling you to do or not do?
Day 3: What has God been teaching you this week? How can you make yourself ready for the promised one, the great deliverer?
Day 4: Prayer
Spend this week praying for your mom and other important women in your life. Pray that God continues to be faithful to you as a family and in your mother’s life. Pray that God would show you ways that you can serve and love your mom and other women with a genuine heart.
> A little challenge would be to do something heartfelt. Write them a note of encouragement and love.