1 Samuel 8:6
“But the thing displeased Samuel when they said, ‘Give us a king to judge us., So Samuel prayed to the Lord.”
Samuel was given some very bad news. He was informed that the people no longer wanted to be governed by God, and personal responsibility, but wanted to have a king to lead them. We read, their actions displeased Samuel and his displeasure drove him to pray. It was in prayer that he was able to hear the word of the Lord.
The word “displeased” describes Samuel’s emotional state. This same word is also translated as troubled, afflicted, or angered. We learn Israel’s godly leader was affected by the same emotions that we struggle through and he allowed his emotional condition to drive him to prayer. Samuel is not alone. We find a variety of Biblical characters experiencing a vast array of emotions, which was the driving force that directed them to pray.
Back in chapter seven we read that the nation feared the Philistines and that their fear drove them to prayer.
1 Samuel 7:7-8
“…And when the children of Israel heard of it, they were afraid of the Philistines. So the children of Israel said to Samuel, ‘Do not cease to cry out to the Lord our God for us, that He may save us from the hand of the Philistines.'”
David was no stranger to emotions. His poetic writings are filled will examples of his emotional condition leading to prayer. In times of anger, fear, anxiety, and disappointment, he learned to go before the Lord for comfort and for answers.
In one of the most beautiful and practical promises in Scripture, Paul wrote that when we are anxious we should not worry but pray with thanksgiving and the peace of God will guard us (Philippians 4:6-7).
Whatever emotions you are struggling through today, whether life is causing you fear, anxiety, bitterness, or joy, the best place to unload these feelings is at the throne of Grace, where God promises to give you help in time of need.