1 Samuel 17:37,”The LORD that delivered me out of the paw of the lion, and out of the paw of the bear, he will deliver me out of the hand of this Philistine. And Saul said unto David, Go, and the LORD be with thee.”
Many times we recollect David’s slaying of Goliath, but we fail to mention what prepared David to successfully accomplish such a great feat. David had practice. He was first processed by a lion and a bear. See, many times we only tell people about the greatest obstacles we have overcome in our lives, but those seemingly less significant hindrances are just as important to share too because those are the practice rounds we had to endure to be prepared to handle the greater tests. Before he was renown, before he was to be lauded as the great victor, David first had to tackle his lions and bears. Likewise, before we can suit up and stretch out to defeat our giants, we must first take on our lions and bears.
We all have our lions and bears, even Dorothy of the Wizard of Oz! Your lions and bears could be health issues, marital problems, unemployment, etc. These are those nagging things that we must first overcome in our private ministries before we are released to public ministry. Any entertainer can perform in front of a screaming crowd where the adrenaline is racing through our veins and our reputation is at stake, but what about when no one is looking? How well do we fare when the only spectators are ants and crickets? Are we as mighty then? Are we as valiant then or do we reserve our ‘tough stuff’ exterior for when we are placed on display for the crowds?
David defeated the lions and bears. He defended the sheep he was assigned to protect. He protected his turf. He was a faithful shepherd before he became king. Are we as loyal at home as we pretend to be in front of others? Can we pass the ‘charity at home’ test which is where our first ministries are located?
Before you take on Goliath to demonstrate that you are valiant in battle, try defeating and destroying the lions and bears first. Learn the art of warfare by conquering those things which threaten the home front first then let warrior in you spill over into greater battles to be won. By the time David approached Goliath, he was already confident in his God and in his ability to win because he practiced defeating the enemy in the wild. He had already killed the lions and the bears and to him, this giant, was no different.