Summary: Use your own spiritual tools, don't imitate the work of others.
1 Samuel 17:38-39 KJV And Saul armed David with his armour, and he put an helmet of brass upon his head; also he armed him with a coat of mail.  And David girded his sword upon his armour, and he assayed to go; for he had not proved it. And David said unto Saul, I cannot go with these; for I have not proved them. And David put them off him.
I. INTRODUCTION—THE VALUE OF RESPONSIBILITY
-There is a preparation process that God puts every man through. There is no immunity to God’s school of progress. We learn a multitude of lessons in the various outlets of life.
-It is called responsibility. There will come a time in your life when you will be skilled enough to pick up a sword but until then use the tools that God has given to you.
Wendell Phillips—Responsibility educates.
J. G. Holland—Responsibility walks hand in hand with capacity and power.
Channing—Every human being has a work to carry on within, duties to perform abroad, influences to exert, which are peculiarly his, and which no conscience but his own can teach.
George Macdonald—I find the doing of the will of God leaves me no time for disputing His plans.
Rembrandt—Try to put well in practice what you already know; and in doing so, you will, in good time, discover the hidden things which you now inquire about. Practice what you know, and it will help to make clear what you do not know.
-One of the things that rob us of fulfilling responsibilities to God and to ourselves is the fatal mistake of fighting imaginary wars in our heads or building castles in the mind. They ultimately come to nothing.
-There is a price-tag that comes with greatness:
• Greatness is not easy, it is difficult.
• Highlights don’t start at the free-throw line, they start in the gym.
• Every shot you take won’t be a game-winner.
• Substance is not built on flash, there has to be some fire burning on the inside.
• Greatness will teach you that failure will finally give up strength through determination.
• Painful hurts in life can be a motivation for you to be responsible.
• Few things in life are God-given, most of them you have to work for every day of your life.
• Greatness annuls excuses and pushes for excellence.
1 Corinthians 3:8 KJV Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour.
Numbers 13:30 KJV And Caleb stilled the people before Moses, and said, Let us go up at once, and possess it; for we are well able to overcome it.
1 Corinthians 9:24 KJV Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain.
-There is a majesty that comes to us in the mundane. Some never realize the power of the common and the ordinary routines of life. But it is here that so much is worked out by the hand of God.
Ralph was a preacher who often preached Longhorn sermons. Every Sunday, he sweated in his pew while waiting to get up to preach. He would plead with the Lord “Give me a Word, Lord! Give me a Word!” Then he would get up and preach a Longhorn sermon. In case you are wondering what a Longhorn sermon is; a brief definition will make you understand. A Longhorn sermon is a couple of points with a lot of bull in between. Finally one day the Lord answered poor, desperate Ralph. The Lord said, “Ralph, I have a word for you. You’re lazy! If you would get to work, you would have something to preach! Now get busy and buckle down!”
-What Ralph was missing along with a whole host of other good saints is that not only is there majesty in the mundane but there is also mastery in the mundane. Skill comes to us often when we least expect it. Responsibility ushers it into our lives.
II. DESCENDING INTO THE VALLEY OF ELAH
-We come to this particular text and I feel certain that most everyone has heard the story of David and Goliath. It is a powerful story, a classic underdog tale, that all of us can feel like we have been a part of.
-I would think that everyone here has been in a place in life where they felt like that they were backed up against the biggest obstacle or trial of their life and saw no way to be able to defeat the giant that was before them.
A. The Power in the Pasture
-Every generation has its own unique people who come along and have the ability to change the nature and direction of history with a single courageous act.