When they arrived, Samuel saw Eliab and thought, "Surely the LORD's anointed stands here before the LORD." 1 Sam 16:6
All God told Samuel was that he had chosen one of Jesse's son's to be the next king. Samuel was so impressed when he saw Eliab that he about to anoint him king.
Think about it. How would you go
about finding the next King?
Would you put an ad on the internet or newspaper asking for resumes? Would you comb through the stacks of resumes and call back the ones with the best credentials? Would you start conducting interviews and weeding out based on appearance and the way they answered your questions? That's probably how we would do it, right?
But the LORD said to Samuel, "Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The LORD does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart."
1 Sam 16:7
That's not how we usually do things. The LORD does not look at the things man looks at. Just a reminder, if we are not seeing things differently than everyone else, then we are probably headed in the wrong direction.
Then Jesse called Abinadab and had him pass in front of Samuel. But Samuel said, "The LORD has not chosen this one either." Jesse then had Shammah pass by, but Samuel said, "Nor has the LORD chosen this one." Jesse had seven of his sons pass before Samuel, but Samuel said to him, "The LORD has not chosen these." So he asked Jesse, "Are these all the sons you have?"
"There is still the youngest," Jesse answered, "but he is tending the sheep."
Samuel said, "Send for him; we will not sit down [a] until he arrives."
So he sent and had him brought in. He was ruddy, with a fine appearance and handsome features.
Then the LORD said, "Rise and anoint him; he is the one."
1 Sam 16:8-12
God saw his potential and his heart, and knew that he would be king.
Do you normally "look at" someone or something or do you have the ability to "look through" a person or situation?
When training leaders I'll usually show them the picture above and ask "what do you see"?
Almost always they will say "trees". Very few will ever say furniture, a baseball bat, a house, a violin; the things that the tress could become.
Do you see potential in the people around you, or are you just seeing the "bark"?