WHEN I was a kid, my favorite Bible Story was that of David and how — with his sling and a stone — he defeated the mighty Philistine giant, Goliath, and saved the people of Israel. From then on, I viewed David as a hero and realized that it is not who you are and what you are capable of doing that dictates victory, but faith.
I heard the story once again in our pastor’s message this morning and found a few more lessons that I just need so badly now.
1. We all have our own Goliaths. Our Goliaths come in many form. They are those that challenge us. They could be our problems that affect ourselves, our families, and our relationships with others. They could be our fears, worries, anxieties, or anything that goes between us and our desires. Not one is spared; we all have something that momentarily raises our blood pressures and the levels of dopamine, norepinephrine andepinephrine in our body.
2. The size of our Goliaths depends on how we see them. Some Goliaths are really big. Think of those people who have lost loved ones, properties, and livelihood due to calamities and tragedies. There are also some minor Goliaths but had led some people to end their own lives.
The size of our problems really depend on how we see them. When we visited the evacuation centers in Cotabato City, we noticed how people can laugh and remain cheerful despite the calamity they faced. Some were even able to continue making a living by erecting stalls inside the evacuation centers.
There is a famous saying that goes, the problem is not the problem itself but your attitude towards the problem.
3. It takes a lot of courage to face our Goliaths. I have always been afraid of encountering enemies. As a kid, I have always avoided brawls — unless my enemies succeeded in provoking me to fight. I have once punched the face of a bully who was bigger than me when he blocked my path one afternoon. I was rushing to catch the first period of the afternoon session. I was really afraid of him but I had to show him that I am capable of getting back at him. He was taken aback while I went on my way to my classroom, which was only a few steps away. He never blocked my way again after that.
But where do we get our courage?
Mayor Sara Duterte was very courageous when she punched the sheriff who led the demolition of informal settlers in Davao. Where did she get her courage? Well, she is the city mayor, whom should she fear? Secondly, she is the daughter of Rodrigo Duterte and that is self-explanatory. She is a Goliath herself; a Goliath who defends the poor, for that matter.
How about for ordinary people like us? Where do we get courage?
David tells us in Psalms 23:4 that we have no reason to fear because the Lord is always with us.
4. God sends Goliaths to reveal our character. Why did God send Goliath and chose David to face him? We would know later on that David became a great King of Israel. He rose from being a lowly shepherd boy to becoming the King of God’s chosen people. He was mocked by the enemy for his size and inexperience in the battlefield but never did they know that the little boy they looked down on was to become a king. (Additional Reading)
Similarly, God gives Goliaths to reveal who we are and what we are capable of doing. After successfully facing our giants, we would become someone better.
A few years ago, I found out that the bully who blocked my way when I was a kid became a batang tun-og, one of those out-of-school youth who have become a problem of the community and was rescued by one of the programs of the DSWD.
5. Our victory depends on the level of our faith in God.
One of my favorite verses from the Bible is Proverbs 3:5, which states, Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding (NIV).
According to our pastor this morning, there are three levels of faith. You know you are on the first level when you would say, “God can do it.” You are on the second level when you would say, “God will do it.” And you are on the third level if you would say, “I consider it done.”
I am facing one big Goliath now. I asked for God’s help and I believe that my Goliath is already defeated.