This past week we had a guy named Jim Mead come share at our church. As Jim recounted to us his battle—fighting the trials of a stroke that left him with 20% of his cerebellum, a battle that should have left him incapable of functioning in any normal way (this guy is a living, breathing, walking miracle) —he reminded us that we each have a giant to face. The reality of any giant is that it is bigger than we are (hence the name giant), and so it is impossible to conquer. With our elbows on the table they will win the arm wrestle hands down every time—they simply have more muscle. Many of us live a defeated life with giants taunting us, and crushing us under their weight. There is a playground reality that brings hope. Though the giants are the biggest, strongest bullies on the school yard, our daddy can beat them up! In the famous words of Veggie Tales “God is bigger than the boogeyman”. God always stands taller than our giants, and though we cannot muster the strength, will, or wisdom to win on our own, when we rely on God rather than our own punches, we, like David, can cut off the head of our giants.
I love Jim’s quote. “Israel said Goliath is too big to hit, David said Goliath is too big to miss." He walked into battle through a sea of cowering Israelites to stand before a giant who could quite literally rip his arms off, and yet, he was completely confident of his imminent victory. Why? 1 Samuel 17: 46-47 reveals to us the heart and mind of the young shepherd boy.
Today the Lord will conquer you, and I will kill you and cut off your head… everyone assembled here will know that the Lord rescues his people, but not with sword and spear. This is the Lord’s battle, and he will give you to us!”
Moments later, David stood over the body of a defeated giant. Jim pointed out to us some truths from this story that can encourage us in our own giant battles. First, David had learned to trust God with smaller giants—lions and bears—so when the big one came, he had confidence in his God. Second, he believed that the cause before him was greater than the giant. There was too much at stake—the giant had to be defeated. If David didn’t believe in his cause of upholding the name of God, he never would willingly face the giant. Lastly, he knew God could win.
I think what comes next is equally significant. As David stands over the body of a dead giant—we are reminded that there is a whole army of philistines in front of him. There’s also a whole army of Israelites behind him. The battle has been won—the giant defeated—but the war is not over. The cowering philistines ran…and Israel conquered. There are two inspiring truths that can be gleaned here. First, David’s boldness of faith—his belief in the cause, and assurance of victory—inspired a whole army into battle. Secondly, it took a whole army to win the war. God calls us to trust in him to defeat our giants, but he also invites us to fight the wars in community alongside bothers in arms. I never have to face my giants alone. My God is bigger, my cause is greater, and my victory is imminent. When I win the battle, I have brothers to help fight the war.
To our giants let us declare: “This is the Lord’s battle, and he will give you to us!"