"It's the little things that get you!" One of my football coaches would say this. A missed block would destroy a good play. A lazy cut on a pass route would cause the pass to be incomplete. A missed assignment in the secondary meant a touchdown for the other team. In fact, this year's national championship game ended with a player losing concentration for just a tiny moment, and that was all it took. Game over!
In the story of David and Goliath we most often talk about how the little guy sometimes wins ... how good overcomes evil ... how the underdog sometimes has his day. But I want us to think of this story from Goliath's perspective. Goliath had swagger ... but swagger is of little value when the battle begins. Goliath had size, might and training so he assumed he would win ... but those things don't matter when your opponent is focused and determined. Goliath had himself (it was all he needed in his battles to this point) ... but Goliath didn't know the spiritual side of the battle ... he didn't know that David was empowered by God.
I know this is a familiar children's story and we adults sometimes place this little tale in that happy, childhood, nostalgic place in our mind. But there is another place for this story. For men, and some women, Goliath's folly is how we live our daily life. We are hurting, depressed, overwhelmed, confused and in turmoil, yet we respond in the way Goliath responded. We want to look like nothing is wrong ... so we play the swagger card and nobody sees our hurt. We say, "It's all good," but we know it isn't all good ... we mask our fears by our cliche' responses. We (be honest guys!) say we can handle this without God's help or the help of others ... and we stay in that place of hovering, never facing or moving past our problems.
In the Bible story, David won because he did some very healthy things. He faced the problem with no personal swagger (he was impossibly outmatched ... so he knew his lack of resources). He used his mind and his focus to understand he was in the fight of his life and he used every resource (agility, quickness, skill, training, knowledge) he had. And David allowed God in to the battle. Enter the battle without pride. Look for every tool and resource so that you can face your enemy and give the battle all you got! And never enter the battle without God being over you, around you, beside you and before you. Randy