Thursday, June 12, 2014

1 Samuel 17:32-37 -- On Facing the Giant Scariness

"And David said to Saul, Let no man’s heart fail because of him; thy servant will go and fight with this Philistine.
And Saul said to David, Thou art not able to go against this Philistine to fight with him: for thou art but a youth, and he a man of war from his youth.
And David said unto Saul, Thy servant kept his father’s sheep, and there came a lion, and a bear, and took a lamb out of the flock:
And I went out after him, and smote him, and delivered it out of his mouth: and when he arose against me, I caught him by his beard, and smote him, and slew him.
Thy servant slew both the lion and the bear: and this uncircumcised Philistine shall be as one of them, seeing he hath defied the armies of the living God.
David said moreover, The Lord that delivered me out of the paw of the lion, and out of the paw of the bear, he will deliver me out of the hand of this Philistine. And Saul said unto David, Go, and the Lord be with thee."
1 Samuel 17:32-37

This is part of the story of David and Goliath.  We've probably all heard it, but it struck me today because I think that we are all familiar with the idea of the overwhelming, scary obstacle. :)  Goliath had been taunting the Israelite armies for over a month.  Coming out, challenging *anyone* in their camp to come fight with him in single combat to resolve the differences between their nations.  He was huge and scary, and they could tell just by looking at him that if anyone tried, he would eat them for lunch (figuratively).  And then here comes David, sent by his dad to bring food to his brothers.  And he sees Goliath, and can't believe that he is standing against the army of God.  He sees him with a different perspective... as a lion or a bear among his sheep.  And he has handled that kind of threat before.  He knows that God will help him, and so he goes, he slings his stone, and then he cuts off his head with his own sword.
And isn't this the story of our lives as well?  We are like the Israelite armies so often, facing something that terrifies us.  It's a giant.  It's something we can't possibly dream of facing.  We know that we will lose, and so we run away, or delay, or avoid.  We sit camped with our armies for months, waiting.
Sometimes we're even like Goliath.  We intimidate and press and try to get other people to back down, knowing they can't touch us in a real battle.  But when we have the spirit with us... when we are on the same page with God, then we know first, which side of the battle we should be on, and we also know that with God's help we can remove the opposition.
Sometimes the opposition is ourselves, in Goliath mode, and all we have to do is get that brutish part of ourselves to repent and back down, realizing that we are on the wrong side of the battle.  Not easy, but less bloody. :)  Sometimes we are in scared army mode and we have to stop running away and realize that we can face our fears... that God will help us.  And sometimes, when we are really blessed, and really lucky, we get to play David, and help other people overcome their big scary problems. :)  Then we get to be the hero and save the day. :)
Today, let's face and take down the giant scariness in our lives.  Let's get rid of the impossible-seeming things that stand in the way of our progression... even when it is ourselves.  And let's also help others remember that nothing is too big for the Lord.


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