In 1 Samuel chapter 17, we read the inspiring and very well-known true life story of David defeating the Philistine giant Goliath in the Valley of Elah.
It's a story for the ages of epic proportions that gives us hope for those impossible situations that loom larger than life in our own modern day moments...right here on the plains of Kansas rather than the ancient Valley of Elah.
But the point the Lord made to me was as much about chapter 21 of 1 Samuel as it was the 17th chapter.
It was as much about my own fears as it was about fearless David-type of living.
Maybe you've dealt with fear recently?
Maybe you have, at some point in your life, defeated your personal Goliath & now find yourself unsure about why you're so fearful right now when you've already seen the Lord do the miraculous on your behalf?
In chapter 21, David is on the run from King Saul. While he was once the hero in the battle for Israel (against Goliath and his people, the violent and oppressive Philistines) he is no longer the darling of the kingdom, at least not in the eyes of the jealous & rage-filled king.
After being the go-to guy on the battlefield when every other solider was quaking in their sandals, David was now on the outs. Ain't that just the way sometimes? The phrase "No good deed goes unpunished" comes to mind!
So David, in his haste to escape Saul's death threats (which were far more than just threats...he fully intended to act on them!) fled with no weapons or food. He ended up fleeing to the city of Nob, and there he met with the priest Ahimelech. Now, this priest was no fool and he was very afraid that David's presence there in Nob could lead to trouble if he were there of his own accord, especially if he were, say, running for his life.
But David told a lie and said he was there on the king's business...and Ahimelech had compassion on David, giving him food (not just any food, either...) And then David asked the priest if there was, by chance, a sword or a spear he could use. And there certainly way! The very same sword that had belonged to the now deceased giant Goliath...in fact, the very same sword David had used to cut off Goliath's head after he had sunk a rock deep into his forehead.
So, here's where the Lord spoke straight into my heart from this passage.
In verse 9 of chapter 21 of the book of 1 Samuel, when the priest Ahimelech tells David that he has access to Goliath's sword, here is David's response: "There is none like it; give it to me."
Those words floored me. All in the blink of an eye, I understood that I had done what David had done...and it wasn't good, what I had done.
When Goliath bore this exact weapon back in the Valley of Elah, he would have wanted the very sight of it to strike fear in David's heart, to render him petrified with fear. But, of course, it did no such thing. David loaded his sling, aimed true to his mark, and used that fear-weapon to remove the giant's head from his shoulders. Boom.
And now, just four chapters later, David is picking up the very weapon that his enemy had intended to use against him...
In the podcast I share the story of 2 events in my life that were similar yet different...and how I took the weapon my enemy tried to use against me during the first event (that weapon being FEAR) and tried to use it in some weird manner to move God's needle to answer my panicky, fearful prayers during the later event involving my health...I was not in the least bothered by the enemy brandishing "FEAR FEAR FEAR" in stage one...and in stage two, I picked up that same weapon of "FEAR FEAR FEAR" and found my prayers being driven by fear and not by faith.
Fear based praying robs God of worship He deserves.
Fear based praying leaves us empty and self-focused.
Fear based praying is the equivalent of using Satan's weapon to try and influence God's response to us.
It is gross.
And it had to be expelled from my life.
I traded it out and now pray from a place of rest - and the peace Jesus gives me is amazing and refreshing. And it's available to you, too.
If you have an area of your life where you have taken up the weapon your enemy used against you in the past and now find yourself fighting with that same weapon today, can I encourage you to lay it down and just opt to rest in Jesus?
Trust Him enough to refuse fear a place in your prayer life.
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