Deeper Still

Deeper Still are longer teachings. One of most recent is from Mourning to Anointing. For others, see the sidebar. 

From Mourning to Anointing

Samuel, the prophet of God, lay in mourning for the loss of the King of Israel. Saul had moved out of the grace of God. He had walked away, and God rejected Saul. Samuel viewed this as death, death in the spiritual realm, so his spirit mourned for Saul. But mourning is only meant to last for a short season. It has a purpose in our spirit. The mourning spoken of in this passage is a spiritual mourning that allows room for sorrow and repentance, but opens up to renewed anointing.

God used the word “abal” for “mourn” as He spoke to Samuel: “How long will you mourn for Saul . . .?”  This word for mourn is generally used figuratively or poetically. “Abal” often refers to mourning over spiritual aspects of life: 1) Mourning over land lost because of sin (Is. 3:26). 2) Mourning had been heard over wayward Jerusalem (Is. 66:10) 3) Mourning over Israel’s broken covenant with God (Ezra 10:6) 4) Mourning over God’s judgment in the wilderness (Ex. 33:4).

This mourning is also used as a false mourning. Samuel’s mourning here was probably slightly false, because his mourning was not only over Saul but also his own rejection or view as a prophet in the eyes of the people.

Often I find myself discouraged or distraught because of my sin. Perhaps my greatest “mourning” comes when I look at others and say I will never measure up. I judge myself against others. This often happens when someone is “chosen” over myself, when the task or position I had hoped for is handed off to another equally or more qualified. I feel rejected.

Samuel, like me, had issues with rejection. In I Samuel 8, Samuel grew old. The people recognized his fainting physical appearance. Also, like his priestly predecessor Eli, Samuel’s children had drifted from God.  The Israelites recognized these two problems and brought them up to Samuel. They used these excuses to request that a King rule over them rather than a prophet of God. So this upset Samuel.

But God understood Samuel’s heart. He said to Samuel: “Listen to all that the people are saying to you; it’s not you they have rejected, but they have rejected me as king (I Samuel 8:7, NIV)

Alongside this sin of judging myself and the feeling of rejection often comes a twinge of jealousy. “Why not me, Lord?” I immediately lunge into a deep mourning, mourning the rejection but also mourning the sin of my reaction. The two create turmoil in my Spirit and often I can only weep for several hours.

Another reason for the deep mourning or crying is when I’m embarrassed, because of an action of my own doing or a sudden change in events that makes me look I like a made a large, or even small, mistake.

Perhaps I said or did something that made me feel humiliated. I had drawn unnecessary attention to myself usually because of a prideful desire within myself. I was out of the will of God and into my own desires. This is sin and should be mourned.

Or sometimes I thought I was in God’s will and suddenly life changes.

It was in such a time of rejection and regression that God found Samuel. Samuel had only a year or two earlier anointed Saul as King. The mourning for Saul came not only because God had rejected Saul, but perhaps because the rejection was a slap in the face for Samuel.  Samuel didn’t understand why God would make a change that might reduce his standing as a prophet in the eyes of Israel.

But this change, this sudden new direction doesn’t mean Samuel was out of the will of God. After reading about the shortness of Saul’s rule and Samuel’s reaction, I can better understand how well chosen decisions might only lasts for a quick season.  It doesn’t mean I was out of the will of God. It just means that God has something better on the horizon. My mourning over this situation shouldn’t last long, because like Samuel, God has something else for me to do.

God said to Samuel: “How long will you mourn for Saul, since I have rejected him as King over Israel?” God hadn’t rejected Samuel; He had rejected Saul.

God’s next words were: “Fill your horn and be on your way.”

When God called to Samuel, He called to Samuel’s spirit to become alive and go. These motivational words changed Samuel’s spirit from one of mourning to one of anointing. While mourning, Samuel couldn’t walk forward in the anointing God had placed on his life. But God’s call to action allowed the prophet to move again in the Spirit God had placed on his life.

God told Samuel to come out of mourning for the sins of Saul and to lay aside his own feelings of rejection. God called him out of mourning and into anointed action.

Often God calls us out of mourning and into action. When was the last time discouragement overtook you? When was the last time you cried because you felt like you were dying inside and nobody seemed to care? If you listen carefully, generally these times of mourning have a purpose. It’s out of these moments of self-pity and remorse over situations that God will call you to action.

Without these moments of self doubt and stumbling, God’s glory cannot be seen. When we become discouraged and have a lack of belief in ourselves, we can better believe in God. We can see His work exalted in our lives. Our anointing for ministry comes from God alone. It’s an active and continual call on our lives. When we go into mourning over our own actions or the actions of others, this is a form of repentance. With repentance always comes the promise of a renewed anointing. God’s at work in our lives.



  1. Ya Val this was great! Thank you for sending me the articles the stories I am so happy to hear Ashlynn is able to do what she desires with in herself. Its great when children set goals. And are able to accomplish them. Thank goodness when they have parents who are also as ambitious as they are. I thank God for all my family members tall and small. God Bless You Val and Mark–for being a loving husband toward Valerie, Love Lisa

  2. Thanks, Lisa. This is one of my favorite articles I’ve written recently. I just reread it after reading your comment. Although I allow myself to be real and admit sinful issues, I know God’s blood covers me again and again. I know He’s working in my life and yours. Blessings.

  3. Well, I wasn’t planning to leave any comment, but I noticed that your last comment above was dated April 4 (2008), and today (the first day I accessed your site, and thus the first day I read this article) is also April 4 (2009). Too much of a coincidence to not mention it’s too much of a coincidence.

    Keep writing, and keep looking up.

    In Christ,

    Douglas (Dennis Buckley’s friend, from Elkhart and Elkhart Baptist Christian School [1981])

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