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David and Goliath and the View of God

“When Saul and all of Israel heard these words of the Philistine, they were dismayed and greatly afraid.” (1 Samuel 17:11).

Recently I came across this verse from the story of David and Goliath in 1 Samuel, and it blew me away.  This huge behemoth of a man, Goliath, had just challenged the army of Israel and you know it was going to be a fight to the death. No one had ever seen a person of Goliath’s size and understandably they were all scared and stunned. But when David stepped out on the battlefield, he wasn’t afraid at all.

David was the only one who felt and acted this way.  Why was he not afraid? What was it that led David to think and act so confidently in the face of undeniable danger?

I’d like to propose five reasons and they are all wrapped up in this verse from 1 Samuel: “Your servant has struck down both lions and bears, and this uncircumcised Philistine shall be like one of them, for he has defied the armies of the living God” (1 Samuel 17:36).

First David saw himself as a servant of God. He had the correct stance towards God that we are to be God’s servants, serving Him so that His Kingdom will come on earth as it is in Heaven. How many times in my life do I serve myself and then get super frustrated because things are not working out the way I had planned?

Second, I believe David had the correct view of God. David saw God as all powerful and capable of anything.  He had seen God work before when he had protected David as a shepherd boy and helped him kill a lion and a bear.

I have so much work to do in having the correct view of God. It reminds me of this quote: “What comes into our minds when we think about God is the most important thing about us” (A.W. Tozer). I know this is important and unless I get this right, it may impact my entire life. Forgetting who God says He is could prevent me from  stepping into the reason I was created.

Third, David remembered when God had shown His power before, empowering David to kill the predators that threatened him and his flock. How much of our Christian walk is about remembering when God got us through our most challenging times? I know I tend to forget God’s faithfulness and need to do a better job of remembering God’s power and how He has delivered me countless times in the past.

Fourth, David also had faith in God that He would come through for him again. Faith in God is so vital, isn’t it? Countless verses and Bible stories tell us about God giving a thumbs up, and Jesus too, to those people in the Bible who had faith in God.  David is just one of the heroes of faith who displayed this key trait at a most critical time in his life. Oh, how I long that we all become heroes of the faith, trusting this awesome and all powerful God.

Finally, David was very upset that anyone would come against the army of God and actually believe that they were more powerful than our God. There was no doubt in David that God, through him, would conquer Goliath.  None.  Zero! When was the last time we were so upset that we were willing to put ourselves out there to defend the power of God?

The story of David and Goliath is full of life principles to guide us through this life God has entrusted to us. David was not perfect, as we are not perfect, yet God uses His flawed children to show his almighty power and awesomeness so He can get all of the glory.

Which of these five reasons do you think you are doing well in and which one are you struggling with the most?

Friday Inspiration

Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.

Isaiah 41:10


Financial Independence

The Bay Area is one of the wealthiest places on earth, during one of the wealthiest times in history. There are many people who have achieved financial independence or are striving for it. For Christians, as Jesus as our model, what should our aim be? Is it bad to be financially independent or striving toward that goal?

When I was a teenager, I thought if I had more money it would make me happy. I got a lot more money and I was not happier. It actually made me feel arrogant, entitled, selfish, and greedy.

I came to Christ and that did not change things.

I fell in love with Nicole, got married, and started having financial problems. I continued to think, “More money will solve these problems.”

Right around the time that Jeff took me to lunch I had a conversation with my stepmom Lana and she told me I did not have an asset problem but I had an expense problem. I had never thought of it that way. I was a financial planner but never applied these principles to myself!

We had no budget.

We did not track expenses.

We did not prepare a balance sheet.

We were out of control financially.

We were just tracking to be financially independent someday by making more money. Our focus was always making more money. The conversation with Lana was one of my first steps towards realizing that this track was wrong.

I believe chasing after more money was bad for me. Do you think it might be bad for you?

“But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation, into a snare, into many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evils. It is through this craving that some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pangs” (1 Timothy 6:9-10).