Every day a Giant named Goliath would come out, stand in front of the armies of Israel and challenge someone to come out and fight him. And every day the men in that army would cringe in fear and refuse the challenge. Even the King, Saul, one of the largest men of Israel, refused the challenge. Goliath denigrated continually the God of Israel and elevated his own many gods. They were afraid. Their real enemy was not Goliath, it was their own fear.
This had gone on so long that the armies had done a careful inventory of the Giant; he was 6 cubits and a span, (9 feet tall), he had a bronze helmet, was clothed in scale armor (very expensive in that day) that weighed almost 100 pounds, he had bronze grieves covering his legs, a bronze javelin slung between his shoulders, a spear as big as a weavers beam with the spearhead itself weighting 15 pounds, and a shield that was carried by an attendant before him. Fear had led the army of Israel to focus on every detail that reminded them they could not beat this giant.
They spent a lot of time and focus looking at the enemy, what they were up against, and in doing so they decided they could not win.
Then David showed up. He was not impressed with the giant and spent no time in examining the resources of Goliath. He remembered all the times God had helped him in the past, against a bear, against a lion….
David, this young shepherd, inventoried His own resources.”I come to you you in the name of the Lord of Hosts” and “The Battle is the Lord’s” and then “David ran quickly toward the battle line to meet the Philistine”. (1 Samuel 17), and you probably know the rest of the story; Goliath is struck down by a small stone and eventually David becomes King of Israel.
Fear causes us to focus on the resources of our enemy, even become obsessed and paralyzed.
Faith Causes us to focus on God.
We do this. Churches do this. We seem to know well the resources of what we are up against, financial, cultural, health, people, Etc. We know why our church can’t succeed, grow, make a difference. We know why we personally can’t overcome an addiction, a problem, a situation, Etc. We have obsessed on fear, focused on doubt, and settled on failure. We too easily surrender to what we think is inevitable.
“For truly, I say to you If you have faith like a grain of mustard seed, you will say to this mountain,move from here to there, and it will move, and nothing will be impossible for you!” (Jesus Matthew 17:20)
The struggle is not with a Giant, its with the decision we will make to focus on our fear or our faith.