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Overcoming the Giants of Life

by Jim Richards on March 20, 2020
Overcoming the Giants of Life

All of us have giants in our lives. It’s part of the package of our humanity. These giants aren’t the same as Goliath, but our giants are just as real. They may be financial, emotional or vocational giants. They may involve diseases in our bodies or temptations testing our souls. While not inventing extra giants, it’s important that we recognize the ones that we do have.

In I Samuel 17, David faces the giant, Goliath, and provides us with an encouraging template for facing the giants in our lives.

It is important to recognize the crucial situation facing Israel in this story. The Philistines had chosen that the battle with Israel would be one between champions. This was not an unusual form of warfare at that time. What is challenging is that the entire nation of the loser in this battle between champions would become slaves of the nation of the winner. The stakes in this battle were very high. What is even more disconcerting is that absolutely none of the Israelites including King Saul would venture into battle with Goliath.

Into this most challenging and dangerous situation, there comes David who probably is only a young teenager because he is too young to be conscripted into the army.
David embraces three principles to overcome this giant, with these principles being equally applicable to the giants in our lives today:

1. Recognize Who God Is – “Who is this uncircumcised Philistine that he should defy the armies of the living God?” (verse 26). It is important to start with a recognition that the God who we serve is alive and well. He is not a mythological figure lost in the mist of the past. In Exodus 3, Moses had a similar experience of God in the burning bush. Here Moses asked God what his name was, and he answered in verse 14, “I am who I am.” This amazing and totally unique name means that the God who we serve is eternally in the present. Yes, he is in the past, but I don’t live in the past. Yes, he will be in the future, but I don’t live in the future. The only place where you and I live is the present, and that is precisely where God eternally is.

2. Recall Past Demonstrations of the Lord’s Power in Our Lives – “The LORD who delivered me from the paw of the lion and the paw of the bear will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine.” (verse 37) We all have testimonies of God’s past deliverance in our lives. It is faith-building to recall those testimonies as we face today’s giants. So often, the devil tries to convince us that this giant we are facing today is totally unique when in reality all of the giants we face come under the same category as inferior realities to the superior power of the God who dwells within.

3. Recognize Whose Battle It Is- “The battle is the LORD’s” (verse 47) This wonderful step of trust that David takes is built on the previous two principles. It is also important to realize that the lesson of trust is different from the other lessons of life. We learn the lessons of geography once: Brussels is the capital of Belgium. We learn the lessons of mathematics once: 2 X 2 = 4. The lesson of trust, however, has to be learned afresh with each new giant. The fact that we trusted the LORD five years ago for a financial battle and giant doesn’t guarantee that our trust is up-to-date.

The key question is, “Are we today trusting the LORD to overcome the battles that we are facing today?”

Jim Richards
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