Friday, June 14, 2013

David and Goliath, the Psalms, and Catastrophe

I'm feeling a need here to do something a little different and instead of starting a whole other blog, I'm going to do it on this blog-site and explain it with this post.

I recently had a conversation, with a melahomey, that drew heavily on David and Goliath. This person saw a future sermon series in it for me. Maybe. But I also see blogs about it. In addition to the David and Goliath story, I have come to see the Psalms in a whole new way since melanoma entered my life and feel a need to incorporate them into this. But David and Goliath and the Psalms don't just apply to melanoma, they apply to all of life's catastrophes.

So I'm going to spend a while looking at the story and then the Psalms as applied to life's catastrophic times. Everything can be expanded upon and I'm sure readers will have their own insights, but to get that ball rolling...here's 1 Samuel 17 (home of the David and Goliath story) from the New Living Translation. This particular site, biblegateway, offers many translations, including two Jewish ones and various languages.

Few of us will face human giants that loom over us like Goliath did the young David, but we all face giants in life...obstacles that loom large and seem insurmountable. We may live most of our life before facing one, or we may face them on a regular basis, but make no mistake...we will ALL face a Goliath in our life. It may be disease/illness like cancer, mine's melanoma. It may be abuse, a financial crisis, job loss, homelessness, a relationship disaster, death and grief, addiction of any kind, a legal dilemma, aging, and the list goes on. Our Goliaths will each look different, but they will have some commonalities.

They will be bigger than us. They will look down on us and taunt us. They will make us feel helpless and hopeless. They will seek to drive a wedge between us and God. They are mean and ugly; they can have violent tendencies; they come at us with everything they've got and they mean to destroy us; they don't care about our age or anything else; they don't care if we're alone or have an "army," a lot of people, behind us because a "Goliath" seems bigger than anything we've got going for us; they're intimidating; they bring weapons with them (challenges and issues); they're decked out in "armor" and seem impenetrable; and...

They ALL have an exposed spot...an Achilles' heel. The Goliaths, the giants in our life, ALL have a soft spot and they CAN be brought down to size. Not only can they be brought down to size, but they can find themselves under our feet and ultimately defeated. Just remember, David didn't render Goliath powerless and kill him on his own or through his own strength and power. And we won't either.

We have to learn to look at our Goliaths like David looked at Goliath and not the way the Israelite army looked at Big G. We often look at life's giants and see these obstacles that we cannot overcome. We need to realize that what are obstacles to us, are not obstacles to God.

We need to invoke the system young David had in place when he faced a human giant: Goliath looks down on us; we look up, and beyond, Goliath to God; and God looks down on Goliath.

There's not a Goliath on the face of this planet that can stand up under that!

Future posts will look at Goliath, David, God's role in this, the Israelite army and Saul, adapting this for us in facing our giants, and individual Psalms.

For now know that there is hope as you look at the giants in your life. Maybe this little post is already opening your eyes to that.

My prayer is that God keep opening your eyes and heart to what He is doing and has done to slay the Goliath you face and to give you victory!

charis