I love a new perspective, don’t you? Especially one that gives me a picture I can hold on to and reminds me how amazing our God is. That’s what I found in a sermon by Trevor Barton titled “Itty Bitty Giant”.
Recently I found myself allowing thoughts about situations I was facing overwhelm me. This went on for several days. It’s just crazy how our thoughts can consume us and become instruments of fear in our lives.
Maybe that’s how it was for the army of Israel when Goliath was taunting them daily, several times a day.
I Sam 17: 8-10 says, “Goliath stood and shouted to the ranks of Israel, “Why do you come out and line up for battle? Am I not a Philistine, and are you not servants of Saul? Choose a man and have him come down to me. If he is able to fight and kill me, we will become your subjects; but if I overcome him and kill him, you will become our subjects and serve us. Then the Philistine said, “This day I defy the ranks of Israel! Give me a man and let us fight each other.”
Kind of like my thoughts taunting me: “what if this happens?”; “what if it’s that?” or “how will you handle any of it?” and “is there going to be any way you can get it all done?”
And verse 16 says: "For forty days the Philistine came forward every morning and evening and took his stand."
First thing in the morning and last thing at night—it’s constant and it’s exhausting and after a while others begin to notice.
This is where David enters the picture and hears the giant shouting his “usual defiance”. David’s response is to basically ask, “Who does this guy think he is?”
There is a lot of wisdom and power in letting someone else in on what it is that stirs fear in your heart—the “usual defiance” you hear every morning and every evening and all day long. It’s not always easy to admit our fears, but when we keep them to ourselves they seem to gain power. One sure way to deflate them is to bring them into the open by sharing with a trusted friend —
Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 says, “Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work. If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up! Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.”
and with God —
I Peter 5:7 says, “Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you.”
When we face “giants” it’s easy to remember what we should forget (past failures) and forget what we should remember (God’s faithfulness).
David remembered God’s faithfulness in his life and told King Saul, “don’t worry-God’s got this” (see I Sam 17: 32, 37).
And then David RAN toward his giant (I Sam 17:48) and defeated him. The thing that enabled David to do this was the way he saw the giant and the way he saw God.
This is the perspective that has been so helpful to me. I knew this, but seeing it this way was just different and fresh and impacting.
David did not take the perspective of fear that looks like this:
David had the perspective of faith that looks like this:
After a few days of dealing with my “giants,” I remembered the wisdom of Ecclesiastes and shared my fears with a friend or two. It’s amazing how quickly that deflated the threat I was feeling. Actually, now, just a few weeks later, I can’t even remember what those giants were.
God has always been faithful to me. I know he always will be. And now I have a great “word picture” to remind me that he is bigger than any giant I will face. He has already faced down and defeated sin and death through his son, Jesus. Just like the Israelites all shared in David’s victory over Goliath, we all share in Jesus’ victory through the cross.
Look out giants, here we come!!