Imagine facing Goliath, the giant. At about 9’7”, he was two feet taller than the tallest basketball player in the NBA today. Clothed with scale-armor and wearing a heavy bronze helmet, Goliath probably weighed nearly 450 pounds, more than any lineman in professional football.
In his huge hands, he carried a spear four to six inches in diameter and 12 to 15 feet in length. Its iron head alone weighed 30 pounds. It’s hard to picture a soldier throwing such a weapon accurately, but Goliath could. He so terrified the entire Israeli army that they fled in panic. And yet a young boy named David dared to oppose this incredible hulk.
David wore no armor, only a flimsy shepherd’s garment. And he carried no sword. But against all odds, David prevailed. With a single stone from his sling, he struck the Philistine on his forehead, so he fell on his face to the ground. Then David drew Goliath’s sword from his sheath and cut off the giant’s head.
Are there giants in your life?
Probably you, like I, face giants of varying sorts. Not long ago I found myself facing a Goliath I couldn’t even name. I just felt a heaviness settling over me. It didn’t feel like depression, but it was so enormous that I felt weak and hopeless. Nothing I could do made it go away. Absorbing myself in the promises of the Word, praying, plunging into the work of the ministry-all proved futile.
Feeling utterly overwhelmed while alone in a hotel room one day, I began to pray. I’d done this many times without success, but this time was different. Because I was hurting so deeply, I cried out to God in utter abandonment. Before long I caught myself humming a little tune I hadn’t sung in years:
Through it all, through it all, I’ve learned to trust in Jesus, I’ve learned to trust in God…”
Suddenly I felt something move through me. A new courage began to rise up, and I started to worship God all over that room. I sang, I cried, I laughed until finally the dark cloud was gone. The words, believe in God, do not be afraid, coursed through my mind. Then I remembered John 14:1—“Believe in God, believe also in Me.” And I knew I didn’t have to let this Goliath shout at me and wound me every day. Morning and evening he had taunted me, threatened me. But now the living God was in control.
I think I know how the Israelites felt as Goliath shouted at them, “If you don’t overcome me, I’ll force you to serve me the rest of your life.” That’s what it feels like when we face our Goliaths, doesn’t it? And there we stand confronting a mammoth hulk with a huge sword who demands, “What weapon do you have?”
“Only God,” we meekly reply. But God is enough!
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Originally published in the April 1998 issue of Reaching Higher