Have you ever had an overwhelming desire to do something big? I mean BIG! We all have dreams; dreams of fame and fortune, or maybe dreams of impacting the world in one way or another. Some of us want to play pro sports, or win that championship ring, others want to go down in history books for changing the world some how, either way, we dream. The problem is that most of the time as we get older we “wake up” and realize that life has taken us from where we had hope to fulfill those dreams, to what we know as “reality”, and that “reality” tells us that dreaming is for sleep and you have to do whatever you have to do to take care of your responsibilities. My fear is that this “reality” begins to be forced on us as youth in High school and maybe junior high, so by the time we graduate we have these domesticated ideas of how life should be lived.
This grim “reality” has tortured me all of my life. I have lived a life of a dreamer that is constantly woken up by “reality”. I dream big dreams only to be shut down by “reality”. There is always some reason as to why I cannot do something. A lot of the time it is other people, whom I love by they way, that have set their lives in this domesticated “reality” and see the danger of failure who tell me that I need to step back and think a little more about it. Well, I am tired of thinking about it! I am tired of this domesticated “reality”, in fact I do not feel at home here. Limitations, road blocks, risks, and obstacles are signs of the journey called life. When people tell me that I cannot do something for one reason or another, from now on I choose to defy them.
Most of us know the story of David and Goliath, well at least the Readers Digest version. Some kid with a rock and a sling killed a giant. Well, there is a lot more going on than just that. Don’t worry, I am not going to get into some kind of exegetical breakdown of the story in 1 Samuel 17, but I do want to point a couple of things out.
This young guy who watched his father’s sheep is sent to the battle lines to take some provisions to his older brothers. When he gets there, “he” by the way later becomes the king of Israel, David sees this mountain of a man mocking the whole army of Israel, God’s people! While everyone else gets scared of this champion warrior, David gets ticked off! Remember, David isn’t even in the army, and he looks around at everyone backing up with their tail between their legs and wonders why God’s people are backing down from this fool across the plain. When David says that he is going to go and shut this guy up, people start to tell him to get real, in fact his own brother tries to tell him to shut up. David isn’t going to have any of that, there is no way this idiot is going to get away with mocking the God of Israel. When he goes and tells the king what he is about to do, the king tells him that he can’t cause he is a kid and the giant is a seasoned champion warrior. David says something that blows me away every time I read it. Basically he says that when he is watching sheep for his dad, God delivers lions and bears into his bear hands, and they are just doing what they are naturally supposed to do, this guy over there is defying what God has in store for Israel and if God will deliver those beasts into David’s hands then this giant is going to be no challenge at all.
Anyway, after a few other attempts to “protect” David, he shakes it off and walks out to face this giant. As David gets close with nothing but a few rocks, a sling, and a walking stick, Goliath (the giant) starts to laugh and mock him. If this guy way big from across the plain, imagine how much bigger he was in person! Anyway, this guy talks his junk and David responds with another awesome monologue. He tells the giant that there is no way Goliath will walk away from this fight. Why? Because he remembers all that God has done for him, he know that God has already planned to give the whole army behind the giant into the hands of Israel, and that even though the odds are stacked against David and all of the nay-sayers have basically started planning his funeral, God is going to show everyone watching who is really in control.
We all know how the story ends, but what about the events leading up to the moment when David puts the smack down on the unbeatable giant? David hears the people trying to tell him that “reality” is not going to allow his endeavor, he eventually looks at this “endeavor” in the face and realizes how big it really is, but here is the kicker, it doesn’t even faze him! He sees it, recognizes it, and acknowledges it, but knows that God is in control and there is no way that he will fail.
What if more of us had this outlook? What if we stared the giant in the face and mocked it back? What if we shook off the armor that people put on us, or ignored the nay-sayers? What if when people told us about “reality” we laugh at them thinking how silly they are for not believing? What if we refused limitations? What if we slung a rock at doubt and cut off the head of that road block keeping us from advancing to receive what God has planned for us? What if…?