Overcoming Giants in Your Life

“Obstacles are those frightful things you see when you take your eyes off your goals.”  Anonymous

Have you ever felt like you are up against unbelievable odds? Are you in a bad place financially or spiritually? Do your struggles make you feel like you are facing a mountain of difficulty?

We all face giants in life.  We may want to run away in fear, or become emotionally or spiritually paralyzed. We battle giants of fear, unforgiveness, loneliness, insecurity and many others.

In my opinion, there’s no greater story in the Bible than the story of David & Goliath for us to learn important spiritual insights about overcoming giants. Goliath was a giant and a champion warrior. He was undefeated. David was a young man, about 17 years old when he went to the battle lines to bring food to his brothers. It was there that he faced the Goliath and killed him.

2014 was a very difficult year for me. I began the year fighting chronic fatigue that I had for about a year. Then the year continued with betrayals from close friends in ministry, one of who was a former pastor on our staff. In March, Holly’s dad passed away, which was difficult for our whole family. 

A couple of months later someone hacked into a couple of our accounts, which resulted in the loss of thousands of dollars. The LAPD had a special task force in combination with the FBI who handled this kind of crime. They told me after several weeks of investigation, “I’m sorry but you are not going to be able to get that money back.” My stress meter went through the roof.

In July, we took a vacation for three weeks to get refreshed. We came home and in August I was diagnosed with cancer. I was then in treatment for about 6 months. I was facing some real giants. Not just one but a whole football team of giants. The great news is that the cancer is gone now.  God is faithful to bring strength and renewal.  The great news is that the cancer is gone now. Holly’s dad is in heaven, wounds are healed, forgiveness has been expressed and the knowledge that God is truly our provider brings strength to our life.

I learned that one way to overcome giants is to take my attention off of the giants and put it on God. I have to lift my eyes off the giants and put it on the “Giant Slayer.”

David had to put his attention on God, not Goliath. I have to put my attention on Jesus the healer, not cancer. I have to focus on God, not on my losses.

What we focus on, we magnify. What we focus on, we energize. Goliath was between nine and ten feet tall. He was hard to ignore. He was undefeated in war. He was probably 300 victories to 0 defeats. “Do the math!” Beating Goliath was pretty much impossible.

When people say ‘do the math’ I think it means, look at the circumstances and accept that the odds that are against you. We will face many giants AND the odds look like they are highly in favor of our enemy.

David, a teenager, with impossible odds stacked against him, did not focus on Goliath’s successes. He chose to focus on the character, promise and power of God. David said to his giant, “Who is this pagan Philistine anyway, that he is allowed to defy the armies of the living God?” (1 Samuel 17:26 NLT)  His focus was not on the giant, the champion – “this Philistine”, but on the living God. 

Sometimes God’s plan doesn’t add up… the math is irrelevant but the victories are sweet. God helps us win against impossible odds in our lives. We can overcome when we place our hope and our trust in Him. On a side note, we could all learn from the fearlessness of young people. David’s brothers, the rest of the Israelite army was terrified. And a kid, whose one job was delivering sandwiches, took out the giant. Wow.

When you are following God– you CAN defeat your enemies. I am not out of the woods yet after last year, but God is helping me. He is turning situations around. He is healing me and restoring everything the enemy stole from me. I believe God can do this in your life too.  Keep your focus on the faithfulness of God and His promises.

Remember this: “…the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.” (1 John 4:4 NLT)

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Philip Wagner