Thursday, September 9, 2010

Fighting Giants

Sometimes I feel as if I’m battling giants.

I wish I could grab a slingshot and knock them out with a boulder to the head.

But the problem is that the giants aren’t approaching me from afar; the battleground is within. Those giants are sneakier and harder to deal with than the external kind.

Maybe I could just grab a boulder and smash my own head in. I’d like to every now and then. Just tell everybody in there to SHUT UP.

Too bad it’s not that easy.

I know I’ve got to suit up and get ready for battle. Because if I don’t fight the giants, I’ll become their slave. I’ve got to do it the right way, with the right weapons, or face certain defeat. The giants are bigger than I am. They’re bullies. And they don’t fight fair. They use espionage, infiltration, and psychological warfare. They whisper lies. They break the Geneva Convention. They even resort to torture, isolation, and brainwashing techniques.

Little ole me is no match for them without my magic armor. I feel weak, small, worn-out, beat up. Tired of fighting, but not willing to accept defeat. Sick of hiding out in trenches, cold and hungry.

So I drag my weary old bones over to the magic sword and gingerly take it up into my hands. Instantly, I feel stronger. Because of that, I’m able to pick up the heavy shield. Eventually, I get all… or at least most of it… on me.

Still trembling a little, I head out to do battle. Feeling small and alone.

Facing the giants, I do not see the thousands of battalions behind me, covering my back.


 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.” (Ephesians 6:13-18)

I believe that most of us face giants at one time or another.  Giants of habitual sin or fear or depression or despair. Monsters of memory or anger or unforgiveness or addiction or self-loathing. Unhealthy thought patterns, low self-esteem, or pride. Fantasies, compulsions, negativity, judgmentalism, legalism. The bellowing loud voices of these giants try to keep us from being truly free. If you are battling any of these… or others… know that you are not alone.

How do you battle your giants? How can we help each other?


Anonymous said...

Thank you for posting this. I needed to be reminded of this today. I am battling some giants of my own.

Susan said...

This could not have been more timely for me - so, thank you. A while back I read something about a "David mentality" and how we need it to fight our giants. David used faith in God and the knowledge that God was really fighting the battle for him. David didn't run and hide - like I want to do! He did what God wanted him to do. He just stood there, slung a rock, and Goliath was dead and gone. So...knowing that, what is my problem?! I get scared and forget. I don't remember that it isn't me doing battle - it is God battling for/with me. I can't tell you how many wonderful battle plans I've worked out in my head - they just don't make it into the action all the time. I'm soldiering on, though, because I do not want to be defeated by fear, unforgiveness, anger, injustice, and, unfortunately, the list goes on. Now, if I could just keep that grain-of-mustard-seed-sized faith with me all the time.

Karen said...

Same way, and long walks where I pray, HARD!

Anonymous said...

Are you okay? I don't know if the fight is physical or mental, but you sound in great pain. We are (mostly I suppose) a community of women in cyberspace. Unfortunately, we can't stop by the house with a casserole;but whatever the situation, we will pray for your strength and God's will be done. Katie

Anonymous said...

As I read this post, I was reminded of times when the giants seemed so much bigger than I could handle - even when I knew all I had was a sling and a stone. But about this same time Casting Crowns came out with their song, Voice of Truth. The lyrics are such an encouragement to remember that the Voice of Truth is our strength. Following is the portion of the song specifically addressing those giants......

"Oh what I would do to have
The kind of strength it takes to stand before a giant
With just a sling and a stone
Surrounded by the sound of a thousand warriors
Shaking in their armor
Wishing they'd have had the strength to stand

But the giant's calling out my name and he laughs at me
Reminding me of all the times I've tried before and failed
The giant keeps on telling me
Time and time again, "Boy, You'll never win!"
"You'll never win!"

But the Voice of Truth tells me a different story
The Voice of Truth says, "Do not be afraid!"
And the Voice of Truth says, "This is for My glory"
Out of all the voices calling out to me
I will choose to listen and believe
The Voice of Truth

But the stone was just the right size
To put the giant on the ground
And the waves they don't seem so high
From on top of them lookin' down
I will soar with the wings of eagles
When I stop and listen to the sound of Jesus
Singing over me"

Love, hugs and prayers,

Sarah Beth said...

All I can say is WOW. Thank you, Kim.

Anonymous said...

One of your best posts- and that say a lot! As I read it I was mentally checking off each named battle I know most of your story, so it isn't surprising that you are worn to a frazzle spiritually, mentally, and physically. Yet you persist, you reach out, you (hopefully) rest, and grab that sword immediately upon arising. I hate what you've been and continue to go through, though the many people's lives your blogs and Kat's miracles and attitude have changed never ceases to amaze me.
One day, when much of this is in the past (should we not be raptured before then), even you will realize just how mightily God has used you for His Glory. Most of us onlookers already do. Bless you, faithful servant.

Anne H. said...

Wonderful post Kim!
I love what Paul Tripp writes in his book "Instruments in the Redeemer's Hands:"
"There is a war going on beneath the human skirmishes of everyday life. On one side is a jealous God, the giver of a jealous grace. He will not rest until our hearts are completely his. He will not deny the covenant he has made. On the other side is a devious enemy. He knows our weaknesses all too well. He knows that we are prone to wander, prone to replace God. He whispers in our ears the lie of lies, that life can be found apart from God. When we begin to believe that created things give life, he's got us. We will seek and serve the creation, often unaware of the idolatry. We will blame people and situations for the resulting chaos and conflict, when they are really the fruit of idolatry. We must humbly admit we are sinners while we lay hold of the hope of our union with Christ. We don't simply suffer; we suffer as sinners with a deep propensity to run after god-replacements. And, as believers, we don't just suffer as sinners, but as those who have been united with Christ and therefore no longer live under the mastery of sin. We bring these two realities to times of blessing as well. Holding onto both truths is the only way to do battle with our own hearts, and the only way to be part of what God is doing in our lives and others. This is a perspective on life that only those who believe God's Word will ever embrace. It is the heart of biblical personal ministry. It is more than a topical list of problem-solving principles, more than a collection of morals on how to live life, more than an empathetic relationship or a dynamic therapeutic encounter. Biblical personal ministry is rooted in the story of a war and a Savior King. As we place our stories within this great story of the compassion and love of Christ, we will understand who we are and live as we were meant to live."

Susan said...

I teach 5th grade Sunday School and yesterday our lesson was about Moses leading the Israelites out of Egypt. We were talking about how afraid the Israelites were when they realized that they were hemmed in and Pharoah's army was heading right at them. Here is the verse that stuck with me:
"The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still. Exodus 14:14" And then, He parted the Red Sea.

Anonymous said...

Reading this post actually made me cry. Wow! This one really hit home with me right now. I have spent the last thirty years of my life caring for children, and elderly parents. I am happy for the freedom this empty nest has brought, but I am not sure of my value anymore. Those giants are eating away at me. We are strange creatures.It seems we are never satisfied.
I am praying for God to open doors. My life is ultimately about bringing glory to Him. I know that I need to devote my life to prayer so that I will hear Him and not miss opportunities.
Kim, you bring God so much glory with your beautiful words. I am so thankful for you.