He said to David, “Am I a dog, that you come at me with sticks?” And the Philistine cursed David by his gods. (1 Samuel 17:43)
I started to read a book given to me, “David and Goliath” by Malcolm Gladwell. Great book with illuminative insights on how to overcome giants with sticks. Even from the beginning, chapter one is filled with insights –
Goliath is not always the giant he seems to be. He too has his weak spots. Use your strengths, exploit his weaknesses, have the courage to fight differently, forget the standardized methods, and most importantly- have attitude. Even giants can fall. People might laugh at your unorthodox methods. Using sticks to fight giants is unorthodox. Yet sticks overcame the giant, Goliath.
What are your Goliaths, standing tall and seemingly terrifyingly against your life? Remember, they are not always the giants that they seem to be. If used well, sticks can overcome giants.
My thoughts about leadership (this is not my political views or about politics):
Trump won the election. Many people felt shocked and amazed. I too am amazed. The future will only tell what Trump will do in America – good or bad. But I asked myself, “Is there something to be learned from this shocking news about what people want in leadership, which could apply to us.” Why did the US people choose Trump with all his character flaws?
In the many theories that the experts put forward, one stood out the most. It speaks of the heart and emotional needs of the people.
“Trump listened to the American people, the working class.”
“He remembered the forgotten men and women of America, the working class.”
“The Democrats and the left “have given up/abandoned/lost touch with the working class.”
Is there something we can learn as we lead our churches? Are we in touch with our “working class” people and their needs in our churches? Do they feel listened to, cared for, and loved? Do we hear their pain? Or are we, like the Democrats, think we are meeting their needs, or assumed they are fine when they are actually hurting inside.
This is something to ponder – the needs of the “working class” as Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 12:21-16 – the parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, and on those parts of the body that we think less honourable we bestow the greater honour.
There is a danger of being too busy and not being able to hear the voice of the “working class” in our churches. If we slow down just for a moment, have a meal with them like Jesus, perhaps just perhaps we will see something different that we have never seen before.
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30
John already had a bad week last week – his business project was not doing well and he had an unresolved fight with his wife.
He woke up late, didn’t want to wake up because he was moody. So he was in a rush, anxious that he will be late for work. He was afraid of being scolded by his boss again. So he decided to skip his time with God. He rationalized that he will pray later when he is free.
His wife prepared a nice breakfast to try to make up with John. But John was anxious to rush to leave. His wife felt unappreciated and became angry with him for not eating her breakfast that she specially prepared for him. They had a heated argument in the kitchen. With the conflict still unresolved, John left the house in a frustration.
He went down to his car but his car had a flat tyre. He became more frustrated and kicked the tyre. Now because of his flat tyre he is definitely going to be late to work.
He arrived at work, 30 minutes late. He tried to explain to his boss but his boss only corrected him more. He felt depressed and not understood.
At work, the whole day he couldn’t fully concentrate at his job because he was still angry towards his wife, his car, and his boss. His subordinate came to discuss the project with him. But his subordinate forgot to finish the presentation for the project that is to be presented later that afternoon. Already filled with stress and bitterness from the morning argument with his wife, flat tire, and being scolded by his boss, he lashed out and yelled at his subordinates that she is lazy and stupid. His subordinate went away crying because of his harsh criticism. Later that day, after he got his composure, he felt guilty for making his subordinate cry. He apologized but he felt shameful for what he had done.
On his way home, he stopped by a park to think and rest. Tired as he was, he then tried to pray remembering that he missed his quiet time that morning and he had to fulfil his daily commitment time with God. He had to be a good Christian. But his thoughts kept drifting away to all the burdens and troubles that he had and created. He just couldn’t feel connected with God. After less than a few minutes, he gave up trying to pray, and went away feeling even more guilty and burdened.
Little did he know, all day long, God was waiting and walking by John’s side for John to “Come to Him, give Him all John’s worries and burdens, and God will give John rest. God is gentle and humble in heart, and God wants John and you to find rest for your soul.”