The story of David and Goliath in 1 Samuel 17 – this coming Sunday’s First Reading – is without doubt one of the most familiar – and famous – of all the biblical stories. It is immortalized in art, music and inspirational tales because of its audacity – whether you look at it from David’s or Goliath’s or third party perspective.
There is no match whatsoever, between the giant, heavily armored Goliath and the boyish, handsome David.
Yet, that is the real-life picture for everyone of us. There is a Goliath, or many of them, that must be faced every day or at some point in life. They come in the form of debilitating health problems or terminal diseases, if not in one’s life, in a relative, family member, friend or loved one. They come in the form of financial, business or career threats or even ruin; and in relationships too. The list is endless.
The reason this story has been immortalized is because Goliath is not all that formidable. Yes, those Goliaths we face in life can be vanquished and we need to be anchored in that affirmation.
In the Second Reading from 2 Corinthians 6:1-13, Paul looks back at some Goliaths encountered and subdued: hunger, persecution, jail, scorn, ridicule and rejection, and, again, the list goes on. Many can identify with this, even at this time.
Another way of looking at all this is the calming of the storm in the Gospel Reading from Mark 4:35-41. Life tosses us face to face with Goliaths and storms. Life also promises a sure foundation to conquer them. Ralph Waldo Emerson said: “If there is a wall there is a door”. And Andrae Crouch wrote, “Through it all, I learned to trust in God”.