The Marine officer, when he saw that he and his men were surrounded by the enemy, said, “Men, we are surrounded by the enemy; don’t let a one of them get away.”
Every one of us have our own “Goliaths” in life, that is, challenges, trials, problems. The difference between the one who gives up and the one who conquers is attitude! Attitude matters—attitude is altitude! But, if you want to succeed in life (altitude), you must have the right attitude. How do you confront your Goliaths?
Goliath was the Philistine warrior from Gath (1 Samuel 17). He is estimated to have been nine feet tall while David was still a boy, too young to be in the army. Goliath’s armor was tremendous. In every way, he intimidated the Israelites, even King Saul who was supposed to have been a valiant warrior himself.
When Goliath ushered his challenge—that whoever won would be the slave of the other (1 Samuel 17:11), “Saul and all Israel heard these words of the Philistine, [and] they were dismayed and greatly afraid.” No confidence in God. No trust. No faith. No optimism. Is that how you confront your Goliaths?
That is how unbelievers confront their giants. For forty days, Goliath challenged the armies of the Living God and the army acted like their God was dead. “[T]he army was going out to the fight and shouting for the battle” (vs. 20). They were making a lot of noise but they were not accomplishing anything! “And all the men of Israel, when they saw the man, fled from him and were dreadfully afraid” (vs. 24).
David showed up on the scene, small in stature but great in faith. When the soldiers of Israel saw Goliath, they thought: “He is so big; we can never kill him!” David looked at Goliath and apparently thought, “He is so big, I cannot miss!”
David had courage—a word that comes from the Latin word for “heart.” He told King Saul: “Let no man’s heart fail because of him; your servant will go and fight with this Philistine” (vs. 32). David, himself, had heart. He had courage.
One reason David had courage was because he remembered what God had done for him in the past. “The Lord, who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear, He will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine” (vs. 37). David was optimistic that God would do it again.
David also had faith. He could not see God killing Goliath through his hand, but he believed God would do it. David told Goliath: “This day the Lord will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you and take your head from you. And this day I will give the carcasses of the camp of the Philistines to the birds of the air and the wild beasts of the earth, that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel” (vs. 46).
God answered David’s faith with a blessing. God felled Goliath through one stone, one shot from the slingshot of David (vs. 49). God gave David encouragement. It was then that the whole army of Philistines themselves fled, now in terror (vs. 51).
How do you confront your Goliaths? With courage, optimism, faith, and encouragement. Always remember that you can conquer your Goliaths through the power of Almighty God.
Copyright © 2018. Originally published in Droplets of Living Water, November 23, 2016; copyright © by Paul Holland