1 Samuel 3:10

And the Lord came, and stood, and called as at other times, Samuel, Samuel. Then Samuel answered, Speak; for thy servant heareth.

Reference:

Frank Hayward (my father) loved the story of Samuel's calling.

What is the scriptural or historical context of this scripture:

Samuel began serving the Lord in the tabernacle as a boy. He served Eli who was the high priest. One night Samuel heard someone call his name. He thought it was Eli calling him and ran and said to Eli, "Here I am."

But Eli told him that he hadn't call him and to go back to bed. But when Samuel went to bed he heard his name called again. He again ran to Eli and said, "Here I am."

Eli again told him that he hadn't called him and to go lie down. This was repeated a third time but this time Eli realized that is was the Lord calling Samuel. So this time he explained to Samuel that it was the Lord calling him and he should say, "Speak; for thy servant heareth." when he was called the next time.

Related Scriptures

I always relate this calling to the 3 Nephi chapter 11 where prior to Christ's visit the people hear a voice. But the first three times they don't understand it. And finally they hear it and it is the voice of God proclaiming that Christ is his son. Another time where God speaks and calls more than once to his people.

Thoughts about this scripture:

Sometimes we think we we know what is going on. And we may think we know what the Lord is expecting of us. And when the Lord calls to us, we don't really hear him the first time.

But the Lord is patient, and calls us until we hear him and answer him and listen to what he has to tell us.