We've become a generation of people who shy away from a fight. These days it is perfectly acceptable to be anything, do anything, believe anything as long as you're peaceful about it. Sometimes, however, each of us needs a good tussle. It's in the battle that we grow to another level. The fight in the valley is what stands between us and our next level.
I believe God sometimes answers our prayers for promotion by sending us a mean, obnoxious, ill-tempered giant to stand in our way and mock us - our Goliath.
Let's take a quick look at some verses from the 17th Chapter of 1 Samuel wherein the story of David and Goliath is told:
"The Philistines stood on the mountain on one side while Israel stood on the mountain on the other side, with the valley between them. Then a champion came out from the armies of the Philistines named Goliath, from Gath..." ~1 Samuel 17:3-4
We can see already that the battle is going to go down in the valley. Wow! So much symbolism there. Now, we know from reading the previous chapter that David has already been anointed, however, at this point, he is still serving in fairly menial tasks. His oldest brother mocks him later in the passage asking David whether he has some sheep he needs to go check on. David has a great future, a great promise, but he's still a nobody! You'll see as you study that the king and his general don't even know who he is after he's won the battle.
But David's promotion was coming right around the bend!
Maybe your promotion is right around the corner, too? Maybe you've been serving faithfully, but in obscurity all the while knowing the Lord has His hands on you for something greater?
My point of view is just as God used David's fight with the Champion of Gath to propel David into his future, your promotion may depend upon your engaging in the fight. Goliath mocked Isreal morning and night for 40 days until they were sick of hearing him. How long has your Goliath stood in front of you DARING YOU TO FIGHT?!
Do you really want to walk in your purpose?
Do you really want to be all God has made you to be?
Do you really want freedom for your family?
Do you really want the friendships and marriage you say you want?
Do you really want the prosperity that transforms your life and your children's lives?
If you want God's best, you're going to have to fight! And in His Providence, God has made sure you've got a real, fearsome, giant enemy opposing you! Praise God!
Here are some important lessons I learned from reading about David and Goliath (in no specific order):
1. Your enemy will mock you by calling you something other than you are. Goliath called Israel's army "servants of Saul" but David called them "the armies of the living God." Know who you are!
2. Defeating Goliath may be the key to the relationships, wealth and purpose you've been seeking. David was promised a wife, riches, freedom for his family and never returned to his father's house after the victory. In the next chapter, he meets Jonathan. What blessings are on the other side of your victory?
3. To the faithless, your enemy will be fearful. But, when David finally heard the challenge, all we see him talking about is what the reward for victory will be. That's why I have come to believe in writing out the vision and even using vision boards. Sometimes we have to keep the promise of pleasure in front of us in order to persevere through the pain.
4. I wonder to myself whether a (wo)man is even "living" unless he's in the battle. What can you call what David's brothers were doing? Cowardice is not even within the Biblical definition of "man" anywhere you look. Can we continue to live lives filled with fear? There is always something to run from for the fearful.
5. Most important, it's in the battle that we get to know ourselves and our God. David would never be the same. No one would ever look at him the same. His story still inspires to this day. We come to know God's greatness in those moments wherein His gives us victory where defeat seemed inevitable. Since the Lord already knows the victory is won, the real lesson is ours to learn. We talk about faith, but who needs God-sized faith to watch TV all day?
God uses Goliath to build our faith for future battles.
So, here's your action item to take from this blog: Instead of avoiding the battle like Saul's armies did for too long, know that "the Lord does not deliver by sword or spear" and ask Him which weapons to use. Then, rush into the battle!
Just like we see with the reaction of Saul's army, your victory will encourage others to fight, too...and maybe that's part of what it's all about anyway?