Standing in the Valley of Elah, I gaze at the surrounding hills. It is a very pretty valley, but one where in the Old Testament, a physical battle took place between David and Goliath. The Valley of Elah is a long shallow valley in Israel, and the the West Bank.
I try to picture the scene that David would have seen in 1 Samuel 17. The Philistines are encamped on the hilltop, and the Israelites are further back in the valley. The Philistines had the upper ground, the advantage. It would have seemed impossible…a battle not worth even starting…perhaps time to surrender. But not in David’s mind. Read the story here.
David was overlooked by his family. He could have become bitter about it, but he chose to seek God. He chose the one who never belittles, never ignores or passes by. In 1 Samuel 17, the name of Goliath is mentioned many times, however when David comes on the scene, it is the name of GOD that is mentioned a lot in the story. I don’t think this small literary feature is an accident. David’s focus goes from the opposition to his helper God! A big lesson there for us, about where we choose to place our focus in tough times.
David, clothed with the mighty name of God, enshrouds his fear with God’s courage and strength. Goliath was big, David was small. Goliath had large weapons, David had a slingshot and 5 stones. Goliath had the backup of an entire army, David came alone backed up with the “name of the Lord of Heaven’s Armies” (1 Sam 17:45).
The beautiful thing is this…God is bigger than our giants. He doesn’t really need our humble ‘slingshots’ to fight our battles, but He uses what we have to offer and multiplies it to victory. We have power and strength when we bear the name of Jesus. The Holy Spirit clothes us with a supernatural armour, and armed with the Bible as the Sword of Truth, we can fight our battles, our demons…and win!What does God require us to do?
What does God require us to do?
- Take on the Name of the Lord of Heaven’s Armies… Almighty God!
- Clothe ourselves with the Holy Spirit – who will fit us out with spiritual armour (Eph 6:10-18)
- Have the Sword of Truth in our hands – The Bible
- Take steps to go to battle, having courage that God multiplies and blesses the steps we take. Sometimes those steps might be small, but that is irrelevant when it is coupled with the might of God.
- Have faith and trust that God is indeed bigger than our problems.
- Claim the promises of God’s providence and protection. Claim that He knows the bigger picture and plan.
So whether you are battling addiction, abuse, financial strain, mental illness, family issues, or physical ill-health, or any other giant, God has a promise for you. He promises to be with you. He promises to enable you to be an overcomer. He promises to weave some goodness into your pain. He promises that if we trust wholly in Him, He will see us through.
So today, take those 5 little stones, pop one in your slingshot and speak the name of God to your giant!
1 Sam 17:45 – “I come in the name of the Lord of Heaven’s Armies…”
1 Sam 17:46 – “Today the Lord will conquer…”
1 Sam 17:47 – “This is the Lord’s battle…”