Summary: Obstacles can only be overcome by faith.
1 Samuel 17:1a, 4-11, 19-23, 32-49
“A Cinderella Story”
Certainly the Bible makes it quite clear that God’s power is able to come out of the so-called “least of these,” and therefore anyone of us can do mighty things for God through faith!
And the story of David defeating the Philistine’s giant champion warrior, Goliath—by stepping out in faith is an excellent example of this.
David was the seemingly insignificant youngest son of a farmer.
He was a simple shepherd boy and a really good harp player and that is how the world would have seen him, but God saw in him much more.
How do you see yourself and how does God see you?
What possibilities does God see that we aren’t willing or able to see in ourselves?
And what things are getting in the way of us being all that we can be through God working in us?
In our Old Testament Lesson for this morning the Israelites were going about life, struggling to plant their vineyards, raise their families and instill in their children good values to help them navigate through the challenging terrain of life.
And just when they think they’ve hit smooth sailing for a bit, the Philistines rear their ugly heads.
Just when the people think that they can relax just a little, just when they think they’ve finally got it down, they’re blinded by something huge, something terrifying, by…Goliath.
Does this sound familiar to any of us?
Is this not how this life often goes?
Something comes up in this life…threatening our very existence…our very peace of mind.
And we, like the Israelites who are confronted with the giant Goliath are in a quandary as to what to do.
So…like the Israelites…we sometimes do nothing.
The Israelites wrung their hands and hung their heads, and allowed their fear to incapacitate them.
Day after day, Goliath taunted them: “I am bigger than you are. I am stronger than you are. Evil is greater than good. Darkness is stronger than light. I defy the armies—the forces—of your living God!”
Yes, the Israelites were paralyzed by fear.
And this went on for forty days.
For forty days Goliath taunted the people.
And for forty days their fear grew and grew and grew as they were “dismayed and terrified” and growing more so every day.
Could it be that the Israelites were beginning to believe the taunts of Goliath?
Were they beginning to believe that Goliath was bigger and stronger than they were? Were they beginning to really believe that darkness was stronger than light and that evil was greater than good?
My friends, “Goliath”
is that which threatens to overwhelm us and undo us.
And we all have our Goliaths.
What is your Goliath?
What is it that throws you into a quandary so that you wring your hands, hang your head and do nothing?
What is it that makes you most afraid?
What is it that cripples you, paralyzes you?
What is it that threatens to undo you?
What is it that defies the power of the living God in your life?
Is it the bad news on the front page of the morning newspaper?
Is it your addictions or some temptation that taunts you day and night?
Is it a lack of self-esteem?
Is it peer pressure?
Is it your fear of not being able to keep up with the Jones’?
Is it your fear of not having job security or of not being able to pay your bills?
Is it the fear of being alone?
Is it cancer?
Is it death?
Is it depression?
What is your crippling, paralyzing fear?
What is your “Goliath?”
And how can we possibly combat such a mighty and mammoth foe?
Well, the answer lies in the last place we’d expect to find it.
We would have expected Saul, the king and the military leader of Israel, who stood, as the Bible says, a head and shoulders taller than other men, to go head to head with Goliath.
Or we would have expected one of the Israelite army’s biggest and strongest, bravest and best soldiers to step forward.
Or maybe even some brilliant military commander to come up with some wise maneuver, some shrewd strategic game plan—some cleaver mastermind who could anticipate every possible move the Philistine army could possibly make, like in a giant military chess game.
But a kid with a sling shot…well…go figure!
In order to slay the giant Goliath, God chose to use something so small, so insignificant, so seemingly powerless, so everyday and so ordinary.
A kid with a sling shot!
Yes, what Good News!!!!
What Good News indeed!!!!
God’s power comes out of “the least of these!”
We don’t have to be mighty and wise in the world’s eyes in order to overcome the Goliaths of this life.