READ : 1 Samuel 17:38-49
Then David said to the Philistine, “You come to me with a sword and with a spear and with a javelin . . .” (v. 45)
While working as an ESL teacher in rural Sicily, I taught a young man, Giovanni, for a period of time. He was studying English so he could go to England where he wanted to become a DJ. We talked a lot to build his confidence and vocabulary. Giovanni’s father, a hardware store owner, didn’t want him to leave Sicily, yet the young man was insistent. After a few weeks of conversation, I learned why: in hushed tones, I heard the word “mafia.” If he were to inherit the store, he would also be threatened by the mafia protection racket and have to pay a monthly fee. If he didn’t, violence was the norm. He chose no.
His back against the wall, Giovanni made a moral decision. Similar to David, he was small for the task and lacked the weaponry of his enemy. Yet he believed he could live freely without fear. Giovanni hangs in my memories as I reflect on his bravery and defiance of accepting the status quo. Like many of us who choose to believe in a God who can move mountains and defeat giants, minute by minute we make choices about what path we use to proclaim the glory of our God. The greatest weapon you have to face your daily battles with the evil one is to come against him in the name of the Lord.
Dear Lord, help me to remember today that all I need is you at my side.