Thursday, July 16, 2009

Responding to the Giants - 2

Any parent will tell you that even though children are raised by the same parents in the same household, they all turn our different. You might want to think that they should all be the same, but they are all unique. There's a great example of that when you consider David and his brothers.

The only reason that David was at the battle front was because his father had sent him to deliver food and supplies for his brothers. Upon his arrival, Goliath is in full roar and David hears the taunt for the first time. David is indignant. He's also stunned at what's happening. He starts to ask questions and find out what's going on. It's at that point that you get a snapshot of the family dynamics at Jesse's house. Eliab is the eldest, David is the youngest. Sibling rivalry is in full swing. Eliab passes judgment on David's motives. "You're just a kid... a pest and 'punk'. Go home and leave this for the men....

That might make sense except for one tiny detail that I have never noticed before...

If you remember back to when Samuel (the prophet) went to Jesse's house to anoint a new king, Eliab was the first one he saw. Samuel thought he must be the guy. He's tall, good looking and strong and yet God said that he had rejected him. It's the familiar verse where God says that man looks on the outside, but God looks on the heart. God had seem something in Eliab that caused him to reject him as a potential king. Maybe it was jealousy, a sharp tongue or a quick temper. Maybe it was something else.... The point is that Eliab would not be king because he had disqualified himself.

There are times that the giants intimidate and have their way with us because we have disqualified ourselves from the right to rid ourselves of them. Maybe it's our sin, our attitudes, our judgements or assumptions. Whatever the case, we disqualify ourselves from the promise of victory and deliverance. And so when the giants roar, we retreat to our tents and nothing ever changes.

Qualifying for giant slaying isn't difficult and yet it often remains undone. Qualifying requires repentance that leads to transformation. While we certainly need to repent for the sin that so easily entangles, we also need to repent for our attitudes, perspectives and assumptions about God, ourselves and others. Genuine repentance always leads to transformation. You won't kill the giant before your heart is changed.

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