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Facing Giants

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Lesli NolenBy Lesli Nolen
August 2010

The story begins with a young married couple struggling with the difficulties of life. Financially, they are barely making it, the car keeps breaking down and the house is in need of repairs. The young wife is trying unsuccessfully to get pregnant, and the young husband, a football coach, has not had a winning season in six years.

It seems as if their life could not get any worse. Every time they turn around something else is going wrong. They question why this is happening to them. They feel so down and ashamed. They are completely broken. Then, at his lowest point the husband pulls out his Bible and begins reading it. The wife catches sight of what her husband is doing and she immediately hits her knees and begins to pray.

A failing high-school football coach finds that in order to succeed he must convince his team there’s more to sports than fame and glory in an inspirational tale of courage on the gridiron and the power of God’s word. Grant Taylor (Alex Kendrick) has been coaching the Shiloh Eagles for six years, and he has yet to realize his dream of a winning season.

When the team’s star player transfers schools, the first three games of the new season show no promise for improvement, troubles at home begin to take their toll, and a plot among the player’s fathers to have him fired finds his future in football looking bleak, Coach Taylor is faced with the prospect of either cutting his losses and admitting defeat or turning his life over to God in an attempt to test the true power of faith. With his job on the line and nothing left to lose, Coach Taylor convinces his determined team of underdogs that there’s nothing they can’t accomplish with a little faith—including the miracle of a winning season when all hope seems lost.     

—Jason Buchanan, All Movie Guide

This story is the opening scene from the movie “Facing the Giants,” an inspiring Chistian story about people overcoming great odds with God’s help.

I think so many of us can relate to the events that occur in this story. I think it is our nature to try to do everything on our own, yet we know, God tells us otherwise. The couple was struggling in every way. They were drained physically, emotionally and mentally trying to do it all on their own.  Their problems just kept piling up, one after another. They kept  asking themselves why this was happening.  I know, when I let my troubles get the best of me or when I let them seem bigger than they actually are, it’s all downhill from there.

I think we all face some sort of giant in our life but the key is how we face the giant.

“Giants” is an awesome movie. If you haven’t seen it, I urge you to do so. It made me laugh and cry, and renewed my spirit, all in about an hour and a half. It was a good reminder of how we should put God first in our lives and He will take care of the rest.

I love the part in the movie where one character says “you must prepare for the rain.” Those are important words; watch the film and you’ll understand. But it’s hard to prepare for good when all we see is the bad.

Recently, I had to get out of my comfort zone and face one of my giants. My pastor and his wife were going on vacation and she needed someone to teach the young adult Sunday school class at our church. So she asked me to do it. Of course I said yes, but my heart was saying no. My husband and I teach the youth class and I’m okay there, but you put me in a classroom with young adults that probably know more about the Bible than I do and I start to panic. So I procrastinated and waited until the night before to prepare the lesson that I was to teach on Sunday. I opened the Sunday School Teacher’s Edition to the lesson and my heart dropped! Really, God? This is what I’m suppose teach on? Sunday’s lesson was the story of David versus the giant Philistine, Goliath.

I may not have been going into a battle with a nine-foot giant like David did, but my anxiety of teaching this class made me feel as if I were. I was Saul in this story saying, “Are you sure? You can’t do this.” When I should have been more like David.

David was a man after God’s own heart. David had the faith that pleased God. David meditated on God’s law daily and knew the power of it. David, did not look at Goliath and see the giant he was. Goliath was merely a mortal man defying an all-powerful God. David viewed the battle from God’s point of view rather than his own. David remembered when God had delivered him from the lion and bear. David did not doubt the power of God. He told the Philistine:

“You come to me with sword, with a spear and with a javelin. But I come to you in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Isreal, whom you have defied.” (1Samuel 17:45)

David’s faith never stopped or wavered.  Despite all the criticism and insults, David knew God would fight the battle for him, as He had done in the past. David knew he had to do the right thing. He ran openly to the battle. He knew action needed to be taken and that God would fight for him. Now it was my turn.

I knew I needed to be more like David. I knew I had to go to battle in the name of the Lord Almighty. Just like David, I, too, know exactly when and where God has been there for me. Those mile markers are what we need to have in our lives so when we are facing a giant we can look back and know without a doubt that our God is there.

I don’t know what giant you are facing today, but I’m sure you could fill in the blank with something in your life that is difficult. Maybe it is your children, your grandchildren, maybe it’s your job or your car. Maybe it’s cancer, the loss of a loved one or a relationship that has not been healed.  Whatever giant you face, remember that God has already won the battle.  Trust that God will fight for you and with you.

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