Each of us has giants we need to face. Maybe you’ve been a victim of bullying, or a job you’ve been asked to do seems just too big. Quite possibly you have a health problem or a calling from the Lord that will take you right out of your depth. Whatever the reason, sometimes we encounter a giant of an issue that is in the way of our future.
The Israelites had a problem; the Philistines. They were powerful, technologically more advanced, and particularly aggressive towards the Israelites. Historically, they had oppressed Israel for over 40 years (Judges 13:1; 15:20). On one occasion during battle they’d even captured the Ark of God and taken it to their city, Ashdod. And, of course, we all remember how the Philistine woman, Delilah, subdued the most powerful Israelite of the time, Samson, humiliating him by gouging out his eyes and subjecting him to hard labor in a Gaza prison.
The Israelites had two giants to conquer; the first being the nine-foot tall commander of the Philistine army, Goliath, and the second, their archenemy, the Philistine nation itself. The Israelites were weak, while the Philistines were strong. For 40 days the Philistine giant taunted the Israelites in a face off. Who would win? While we know that the shepherd boy, David, finally slayed Goliath with nothing more than a slingshot, the answer to our question is that the Lord was victorious in this battle.
“You come to me with sword, spear, and javelin, but I come to you in the name of the Lord of Heaven’s Armies—the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. Today the Lord will conquer you, . . . and the whole world will know that there is a God in Israel! 47 And 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!” 1 Samuel 17:45-47 NLT
Saul’s army lacked God’s power because His Spirit had left their king (1 Samuel 16:14). It took a young teenage shepherd, David, to show these two nations that danger awaits those who turn their back on God.
David’s intervention in this battle, and his subsequent success, provide us with ten steps we can take to defeat our own giants. But before you begin, I encourage you to first read the full narrative of the encounter between David and Goliath, found in 1 Samuel 17: 1-51. Then, spend some time reflecting on the following points that can help lead you to a new freedom beyond your issue.
Don’t change who you are. David fought Goliath as a shepherd boy. vv20,22
Stand your ground. Face the issue and don’t run from it. vv24,25
Look for the opportunity rather than the problem. vv26,27
Discouragement is your greatest enemy. vv28-31
Take positive action. vv32,33
Remember your past achievements and be encouraged. vv34-36
Success comes from God’s. vv37
Facing you giants is simpler than you think. vv38-39
Acknowledge God’s role in overcoming your giants vv45-47
A new era begins. vv51
If David can take on a giant and win, and free a whole nation from oppression because of his act of faith in the Lord, then what might you be able to achieve?
“All the nations of the world will stand amazed at what the Lord will do for you. They will be embarrassed at their feeble power. They will cover their mouths in silent awe, deaf to everything around them.” Micah 7:16 NIV