Monday, October 8, 2012

Courage Angers Others

MP900438847Yes, it is sad, but true. When we are courageous, it makes others feel uncomfortable. Perhaps they see their own inadequacies. An example of this can be found in the story of David and Goliath.

Even young children are familiar with the story. As soon as David saw Goliath, he was ready to fight. He could not understand the reluctance of others and cajoled them.

His brother turns on him in anger. Now Eliab his eldest brother heard when he spoke to the men. And Eliab’s anger was kindled against David, and he said, “Why have you come down? And with whom have you left those few sheep in the wilderness? I know your presumption and the evil of your heart, for you have come down to see the battle.”        ~1 Samuel 17:28

People do not like to be told, whether directly or indirectly, that they are not trusting God.

Many times we let the naysayers win. We let our own fears manifest—and often it is simply the fear of ridicule. We turn our backs on our Goliaths, thinking  we are foolish to believe we can prevail.

Yet, who would ever have thought David would prevail? His brothers? The other soldiers? The Philistines? Goliath? Saul?

Picture Saul. He is desperate. He puts armor on David to prepare him for battle. David shrugs it off. Saul had to be thinking, “We’re sunk.”

However, David did not need the armor of Saul, just as we do not need the trappings of this world to succeed. We do not need beauty, or wealth, or education. God uses the weak, the common--in this case, a young teen who used a common stone in his common slingshot. Through our weaknesses, God shines all the brighter.

And what happens next? When the Philistines saw that their champion was dead, they fled. And the men of Israel and Judah rose with a shout and pursued the Philistines as far as Gath and the gates of Ekron, so that the wounded Philistines fell on the way from Shaaraim as far as Gath and Ekron. ~1 Samuel 17:51-52

David’s courage routed the enemy and rallied the troops. Just as our courage can do. We must rely on God and know that it is God who gives us the victory. If we stand firm against the naysayers, if we trust God’s power, if we are unafraid to use the common, we can prevail. The courage to stand up for right gives others courage.

No matter who we anger, let’s be courageous. After all, if God is for us, who can be against us!

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