We all will face giants at one time or another in our lives. By giants, I am speaking of what seem to be insurmountable problems and issues. We try to fell these giants, but often they seem to only grow stronger with the passing of time.
It could be a giant of fear. Or it might be a giant of some type of personal sin that you fall into again and again. It might be the sin of pride or envy or gluttony or lust or something else.
In a related way, your giant might be one of addiction, something that has a grip on your life. Then again, it could be a giant of threat that is taunting you today. Someone has slandered you. A lawsuit has been filed against you. Maybe there is even a threat against your very life.
Or it might be a different kind of giant altogether, like an unbelieving spouse or a prodigal child. You have prayed for them. You have asked the Lord to reach them, yet they seem to become more hardened by sin as the years pass by. You find yourself wondering how you will ever overcome this.
So how do we deal with giants? We find the answer in the Old Testament account of David and Goliath. Most of us are familiar with the story.
What a victory it was as David boldly defeated the giant Goliath, armed only with a slingshot and five smooth stones. The will of the Philistines was broken. The Israelites were reinvigorated. And it was all because a little shepherd boy answered the call of God and cut down the giant.
So what can we learn from this story about facing off with our own giants in life?
One — recognize that we all have giants. We all face severe hardships, seemingly insurmountable obstacles and temptations. We all have problems. We all have temptations.
We read in 1 Corinthians 10:13, “The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure” (nlt).
While it is true we all have giants, it is also true that every giant can be defeated. After all, giants rarely start out that way.
Goliath was not always a giant. He was not always 9-feet-6-inches tall. He was once a baby. And with the passing of time and the nurture of others, the baby became a child. And the child became a teenager. And the teenager became a man. And the man turned into a giant.
In the same way, giants often begin quite small. When we have a big sin in our lives, it started as a little sin that was allowed, nurtured, fed, and even encouraged, and then became a giant that taunts us. It started with a so-called Christian liberty that we proclaimed and is now getting the best of us.
In time, little things become big things.
Two — realize that the battle belongs to the Lord. David told Goliath, “This is the Lord’s battle, and he will give you to us!” (1 Samuel 17:47 nlt). That is why giants defeat us again and again — because we face them in our own strength and we lose. We need to realize this is the Lord’s battle.
Three — attack your giant. Goliath had come into the actual territory of the Israelites. He had crossed their line. He was taunting them. And if you tolerate a Goliath, he will take over your territory. He will come right up on your doorstep.
That is why you don’t run from giants. You don’t negotiate with them. You attack them. The Bible tells us, “As Goliath moved closer to attack, David quickly ran out to meet him” (verse 48 nlt). As the enemy drew closer, David ran right at him.
Whatever your giant may be, force it into the light of day. Stop rationalizing it. Stop excusing it. Realize you can’t defeat it in your own strength.
Call on God and pray for His power, and then attack it. Draw lines and be accountable to others. Stay away from people or situations where you would be easily tempted. And don’t let that giant back into your life again.Finally, trust in the Lord. Don’t look at God in the light of your giant. Instead, look at your giant in the light of God.
Out of their long and painful journey has come a really helpful survival guide, so to speak. It’s a book called Suffer Strong: How to Survive Anything by Redefining Everything. It’s not just an inspiring story of triumph through trials but a how-to book for accepting God’s plan and recognizing His providence even when it feels like your world is shattered.