Working together with Him, we also appeal to you, “Don’t receive God’s grace in vain.” For He says:
I heard you in an acceptable time, and I helped you in the day of salvation.
Look, now is the acceptable time; now is the day of salvation.
We give no opportunity for stumbling to anyone, so that the ministry will not be blamed. But as God’s ministers, we commend ourselves in everything:
by great endurance, by afflictions,
by hardship, by difficulties,
by beatings, by imprisonments,
by riots, by labors,
by sleepless nights, by times of hunger,
by purity, by knowledge,
by patience, by kindness,
by the Holy Spirit, by sincere love,
by the message of truth,
by the power of God;
through weapons of righteousness
on the right hand and the left,
through glory and dishonor,
through slander and good report;
as deceivers yet true;
as unknown yet recognized;
as dying and look—we live;
as being disciplined yet not killed;
as grieving yet always rejoicing;
as poor yet enriching many;
as having nothing yet possessing everything. 2 Corinthians 6:1-13 (HCSB)
The lectionary texts this week are very timely. I hope that those who are given the opportunity to teach or preach will not “wimp out” on this opportunity. That includes me.
The texts are about facing our “giants”. This past week in our Sunday School class we had a question: Are there things about which you do not pray? Are there problems or situations that we think are too “minor” or that “can’t be fixed”?
1 Samuel 17 is the story of David and Goliath. If you haven’t read that story in the past month, take 10-15 minutes and read it. Who was David? The youngest son. No one special. He wasn’t King David yet. He had God inside of him but everyone else still saw him as a kid. Everyone else was afraid of a giant. Goliath was all they could see. God was all David could see and he knew that God was bigger than any giant.
Mark’s passage is the story of Jesus vs the storm. The disciples ask the question that I so often ask: “God, do you not care that I might perish?” Whether I think my life is in jeopardy or whether it is my heart or my ego or my child or my job – all I see is the “giant” of my problem.
Psalm 9 and the 2 Corinthian passage reminds me of who God is in my life. I am reminded of His promised justice. I am reminded that He loves me and always will. He is there in my adversity and suffering. It is His strength that will bring me through whatever comes in my life. Stop now and read over the list again in the 2 Corinthian passage. With Jesus in my life, I truly do possess everything.
Please read over these passages this week and let the words soak into you. If you read newspapers, listen to news broadcasts, read online news – then take the same amount of time to read the truth from our LORD. Yes, there may be “giants” in my life – but I am going to keep my eyes on my LORD. There is nothing impossible with Him!
excerpt from Facing the Giants directed by Alex Kendrick, Sherwood Baptist Church (2006)