A number of years ago when we lived in New Albany, Ohio, I coached our oldest daughter’s middle school rec soccer team. One Saturday we traveled to a nearby community to play a team that was undefeated. When we got to the field the outcome of the game was already decided in my girls minds. The opposing team had girls that were much bigger than the biggest girls on our team. These girls were giant-sized. The coach was even big! As hard as I tried to convince my team that we could play with them, we lost and lost bad. The opposing team’s size intimidated us, and once fear set in we were defeated before the start of the game.
Those same years I also coached our younger daughter’s U-10 soccer team. This team was very good and we were winning games easily. One particular game several of our girls were sick and could not play. We were shorthanded, but instead of seeing this as a giant obstacle, these little girls saw it as an opportunity to overcome the odds. Those girls played better, and harder, than I had ever seen them play, and we won the game with two less girls on the field than our opponent.
We all face giants in our lives; things that just seem too big to conquer. These giants represent obstacles that often seem insurmountable. As we stare at these giant mountains or challenges, we are often defeated before the game begins.
A story in the Bible shows us two responses to overcoming the giants we face. In Numbers chapter 13, as Moses and Aaron were ready to lead the people into the promised land that flowed with milk and honey (Ex 3:8), some scouts were sent out to check out the land. These scouts came back saying that the people who lived there were powerful and the cities fortified. Caleb, one of the spokesmen for the Israelites, responded to that alarming news this way, “We should go up and take possession of the land, for we can certainly do it.” (Num 13:30) He trusted God’s plan. But many of the scouts saw the size of the people and fear ruled their hearts, “We can’t attack those people; they are stronger than we are.” (Num 13:31). And in verse 33 we read, “We even saw giants there, the descendants of Anak. Next to them we felt like grasshoppers, and that’s what they thought, too! (NLT).”
The truth is we need faith to not be consumed by the giants in our path. We need to completely trust that God is bigger than the biggest giant we face. Looking to God, rather than staring at the giant, will give you God-sized strength, and you can say with confidence, “I can do all this through him who gives me strength.” (Phil 4:13)
Are you looking at the giants or at God?
New Bern, North Carolina