Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. IS 41:10 ESV
Last month we lead a group of Chinese exchange students on a Spring Break trip in the Ozarks of Northwestern Arkansas. Together we had an incredible experience as we rock climbed and rappelled at Horseshoe Canyon Ranch and spent two days canoeing on the wild and pristine Buffalo National River. The students all faced fears in various ways throughout the week, but one student in particular, Michael, had a very difficult experience climbing. Michael got about ten feet up the cliff and became paralyzed by fear. We lowered him down and comforted him and reassured him that everything was fine, but he had a major physical response, and it took him about 30 minutes to get the adrenaline out of his system and return to normal. Frequently on our trips, participants like Michael come face to face with the giant of fear. One of the most powerful lessons we are able to teach is that fear doesn’t have to shut us down; we can overcome fear by faith. On a regular basis, we see participants overcome fear of physical danger and learn that they can trust the Lord in any circumstance.
The biblical story of David and Goliath is a powerful one that God has used throughout my life to help me overcome fear, but recently I realized that I have been getting a crucial part of the story wrong. You see, like many of you, I like to imagine myself as David in this story, strong and courageous, overcoming my giants. But I’m not David in this story; Jesus is!
In his powerful book, Goliath Must Fall, Louie Giglio makes this connection. “You are not David. I am not David. Jesus is David! Jesus fights the battles for us. Jesus stares down the face of impossible odds. Jesus takes up His sling. Jesus selects five smooth stones. Jesus takes aim at the giant. The giant falls because of the work of Jesus...The giant of fear is already dead. It’s done for. It was conquered by Jesus on the cross. In the name of Jesus, the giant of fear must fall!”
What an incredibly freeing truth! We are not the ones responsible for slaying our giants; Jesus is, and He has already overcome them by His finished work of the cross. May you rest in the fact that Jesus has overcome your giants. May you look to Him alone for hope and deliverance.