Over the last couple of weeks, I've thought a lot about David and how he killed Goliath. There were several pieces of the story that got my attention. Like, for instance, the fact that he picked up 5 stones on the way to take Goliath down. No one really knows why, he may have been familiar with his own weakness and thought it might take more than one shot! lol
I've also heard it said that he picked up 5 stones because Goliath had 4 brothers and David was preparing to take them out as well. Who knows, the Bible just says he picked up 5 stones on his way out to face the giant. And what he had was enough.
The other thing that captured my thoughts was that David didn't feel unprepared to meet the giant, although he'd never met one. He had, however, killed lions and bears when they tried to attack his sheep. Maybe he was a caregiver at heart too. That thought makes me smile. You know David watched over his sheep and took good care of them. He didn't blink twice when bears or lions came after them - he protected the sheep at all cost.
And now we see him facing Goliath for the same reason. He was protecting what was God's. When no one thought David could take on the giant, he told them and King Saul - When a lion or a bear came and took a lamb from the flock I went out after him and rescued it from his mouth; and when he rose up against me, I seized him by his beard and struck him down and killed him. Then he went on to say he knew since he'd killed lions and bears - he could take on the giant too.
He didn't just wake up one morning and think he'd like to go beat up on a giant. It was somewhat sequential. David first killed the lion and the bear. He took out these smaller things and gained the confidence to face the giant that day. Our battles today prepare us to face the battles of tomorrow.
You know how difficult it was when we first started caregiving? Some things don't ever get any easier - but we learn how to handle things along the way. We learn which words to use to get action from the medical community when we need it. We learn who to call to get supplies, or who to call to see heads roll when necessary. We learn as we go. The more we learn - the less we are afraid of. It's the same way spiritually, I think.
For caregivers, every day is a giant killing day because the task of caregiving lies before us. But we know we can face this day - because we faced yesterday and survived. My prayer from the beginning was that I would not become hard-hearted, but that I would let caregiving make me more sensitive to the voice of God. I wanted to be "pressed by life" and have a beautiful fragrance come out. Sort of like how when David faced Goliath - the warrior part of him came out. But it was because he felt the need to protect, like we do. I have to admit that it's not always been a beautiful fragrance that got squeezed out of me by caregiving. Sometimes, it's been downright ugly. But ultimately for me - and most likely for you - you met the warrior inside.
Now think about this. When we become so pressed by life, caregiving included, we'll see the same passion in God that we saw in David. David fought lions, bears and giants because he was passionately protecting his sheep and God's people. God is just as passionate about protecting us as David was about protecting his sheep. When the giants begin to rise up, so does God's passion. I imagine He says, Not this time.
Today, I'm going to meditate on how my yesterdays have prepared me to face today. My thoughts will be on how the Lord pours His strength into me so I can face any giant in my way. And I'll particularly think about that passion in David to protect - is the same passion in God. I'll think about how He protects me just like David cared for the sheep. I'll be thinking about how God takes care of me - while I take care of my loved one. And I'll just rest in that right there - and trust Him for one more day. Will you join me?