Preparation

I think everyone knows the David and Goliath story. It’s about a teenage boy that stands up to a super big man that an entire army is too afraid to fight. He ends up taking Goliath down with a slingshot to the head. No one believed in David. Of all the people they thought could take down a giant, an unknown teenage boy was last on the list.

“‘Don’t be ridiculous!’ Saul replied. ‘There’s no way you can fight this Philistine and possibly win! You’re only a boy, and he’s been a man of war since his youth.’ But David persisted. ‘I have been taking care of my father’s sheep and goats,’ he said. ‘When a lion or a bear comes to steal a lamb from the flock, I go after it with a club and rescue the lamb from its mouth. If the animal turns on me, I catch it by the jaw and club it to death. I have done this to both lions and bears, and I’ll do it to this pagan Philistine, too, for he has defied the armies of the living God! The Lord who rescued me from the claws of the lion and the bear will rescue me from this Philistine!'” 1Samuel 17:33-37a

I think it’s so interesting how God prepares us for the things to come. These trials that come against us like a car breaking down, a job loss, our kids having trouble in school, etc, they ALL have a purpose. They are all training and preparing our character to be able to handle what God has for us. I have no doubt that there were many times that David sat out with the sheep and goats and wished he could be doing something more. Like his brothers, out at war, seeming to be doing something so significant. But God is so faithful. He finds us right in the middle of mundane and ordinary. He found David in the middle of being a faithful son,working for his dad and presented him with these “opportunities” for preparation. I know that he couldn’t have felt like fighting lions and bears was really this great gift from God, but look at the outcome. David was able to have full confidence in God to rescue him out of ANY situation BECAUSE of all those past hard times.

As I’ve said before, I deal with a bad back. I can’t really work more than a few days a week and even then it can sometimes randomly take me out and I’ll have to miss those days even. Financially, depending on my income can really be up in the air. This is a regular trial that I have to deal with that I don’t really enjoy BUT one thing I can say that I’ve gotten from it is more faith in God to provide. Time after time this past year He has come through for us. Every time something happens and money is supposed to be really low and put us in the negative, randomly Tim gets an opportunity for over time or money just comes in from somewhere. It’s hands down been every single time. He has provided in such huge ways. I still stay responsible and plan for when there is money loss, I don’t just get lazy and act like I don’t have to work now because God will handle it. If I did, then the whole point of what God is trying to do in the situation would be lost. But I have actual peace and trust when it happens now. If I need to let myself take a day and heal, then I’m much quicker to listen to that need and actually take the day instead of push myself just to make the money. It has shown me that I can believe in God for bigger and better. That I can trust Him even when things seem impossible. So now when trials come up against me I can be confident in His protection, provision, and love for me.

Point being that trials prepare us. Trials build our character. But we have to be open to what God is trying to do. David had every opportunity to become bitter. The youngest son, left out in the field, dealing with protecting sheep, putting his life in danger, being unappreciated and not believed in. But he didn’t become bitter and angry. He stayed sensitive to God. He saw past what these circumstances looked like on the outside and saw what they truly were underneath. He didn’t see himself as just a random worker. He saw himself as a person capable of anything, protected by God, a man of purpose. It’s all about perspective. We all have these trials come up against us, trying to hold us back. What if we changed our perspective of them and saw them for what they really were? What if we could see the big picture? What if we saw them through God’s perspective?

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