We all face giants at some time in our lives. Those giants may seem totally impossible to overcome and get around to continue our lives. For some those giants may be intimately personal, depression say, or the loneliness confronting us with the death of someone close. They may be slightly more distant such as persistent debt, mortgage repayments, etc. They may not affect us directly but may affect a community to which we belong, escalating costs, reduction in membership, etc. They of course may also be large and affect everyone such as those tackled by the conference. It does not matter what the size of our personal or collective giants are we need to confront them in the same manner that David did with five pebbles taken from the stream of life. It is all very well to reel of some simple things like, faith, walking with God, love, hope and prayer as examples of pebbles to take into a fight. In the end David used only one of the pebbles not all five, So each pebble is good for one shot at the giants that face us and we have to discern which pebble to use so that we effectively destroy the giant. Is it really as simple as that?
What are your giants and can you face them?
No, it is not. Giants are however easily killed what is not so easy is the courage that David had to face the terrors that the giants form in us. Remember that the rest of the army was terrified of the giant and it was that group terror that paralysed their actions. It was the realisation and example of one person that allowed for the success of the whole. Paul puts it slightly differently in the Corinthian correspondence but essentially the same thought is their and he leads through example in adversity (2 Cor 6. 1-13). We are to be lights in the world, a world that is filled with giants. Giants that reach out into our hearts and kill us through the fears that creep in as we try to face them. Just as the disciples feared the gathering storm (Mk 4.35-41) we also fear what we cannot easily control. Yet, when the light of Christ is shone into the darkness we are able to overcome the fears and reach out to those who are around us and fear as well. Hope, love, prayer, faith etc are all their to help us in our journey travelling along the way that Christ has opened for us. Conquering the fears that overwhelm us in the presence of God. Facing challenge changes us, facing fear heals us, facing the giants makes us a community to be feared.
Only when we truly overcome the terrors that confront us as a family and community joined together will we become as Christ to our neighbours. Even at the darkest moment in our lives, if we look carefully, we will find that Christ's light is beside us guiding us along the stormy way into the brightness of a new future. The grace of God is God's love which out-pours and guides us into new life only when we release that love are we empowered by it. In hoarding it and not using it we limit ourselves. Imagine David not using the pebbles but rather the armour given to him by Saul. He would not have overcome the giant. Relying on God allows us to drop the weight that others place on us, the weight of expectation, as they magnify the fear that comes with facing the giant. Only by God's grace and Christ's light are we able to perform the miracles that God wants for us.