I started my morning reading a passage that I’ve read a hundred times before. It’s the story of David and Goliath from 1 Samuel 17. Such a well-known chapter is easy for anyone to gloss over. Whether you’re a Christian or not, you’ve heard the story of the little guy facing off against a giant. So, when I began reading today I had to challenge myself not to skim the familiar passage, but allow God to speak. And as always, He didn’t disappoint.
There were two parties that stood against the Philistines that day; the army of Israel and David. A massive, trained force and a shepherd boy who’s weapon of choice was a sling and a stone. Any military analyst examining these two would undoubtedly pick Israel’s army as that day’s presumed victor. They had weapons, they had experience, even in a one-on-one battle there had to be one might warrior that could courageously take on Goliath. However, the strength of a great army or their weapons would not be the determining factor that day. There was a key factor that gave a shepherd boy the upper hand, a tactical response that the army of Israel had failed to exercise.
When Israel’s army saw Goliath, they responded with “Surely he has come up to defy Israel.” (1 Sam. 17:25). This response defined who the victor would be in that moment. The army saw the battle as against themselves alone. It was Goliath’s strength against theirs. It was Goliath’s weapons against their weapons. While the army was massive in numbers, they stood on the battlefield alone. They looked around, saw nothing but themselves and so they ran away from the battle.
How many times do we respond in the same way? The problems in our life, the obstacles of our day, the fights we face every morning. We see how big they are and we only see how insignificant our own abilities are and we run. When we are the only ones on the battlefield with only our own abilities to wield, we allow fear and doubt to take the higher ground. Think about Peter, who Christ called out of a boat to walk on water in Matthew 14. He didn’t start sinking until his focus turned to the storm and his faith turned to his own feet. Peter put himself on the battlefield alone with his own abilities and experiences. That’s what happened with the army of Israel. They responded to the battle by seeing only their mere abilities and experiences. The grand army ran from a single man.
David did not respond like the army of Israel and it made all the difference in who won the fight that day. He saw Goliath as not defying Israel alone, but defying “the armies of the living God.” It was all about God for David. He told King Saul it was God who would deliver him that day, not himself and not his weapons. And so, when this shepherd boy stepped out on the battlefield alone, he was not alone, he had the King of the universe fighting beside him.
Imagine that. Imagine if we could have been there that day and seen the stark contrast in armies that confronted Goliath. We would have seen this army of thousands run from a fight as if they were alone. Only to then watch a shepherd boy approach Goliath alone, as if he were a thousand men. David won because he had God fighting beside him. That picture is jaw dropping.
I want the faith that David had when he fought Goliath. When the odds seem to be against me and everything is telling me to run, I want to be able to stand firm in the face of fear, because I am more than confident that the King of kings is fighting by my side. The amazing thing is, there is no reason I can’t. There is no reason you can’t have the same faith and confidence that David did. When we choose to trust in the Lord, even against all odds, then you and I will see Him fight for us. We have no reason to run from the fights we face. The offense may tower over you, but the Lord is bigger. The storms may be terrifying, but our God is greater. The struggles and pain may feel impossible to overcome, but Christ has overcome death that we may have life and life everlasting. For those that believe and place their trust in God, He is not going to disappoint. He will fight by our side every time, in every battle we come against. You can be assured of that no matter what.
I pray that you place your trust in God today, no matter the fights that you face. He will not fail you. Only our own strength and weapons alone will fail us. But the God of all creation, will never fail. He will fight with us, guiding our sling and stone to hit the mark. Victory is His and as His children, victory is ours as well.
The fights you win are the ones where God is fighting right beside you.