Lions and Bears

Read 1 Samuel 17:19-37

When the words that David spoke were heard, they repeated them before Saul; and he sent for him. David said to Saul, "Let no one's heart fail because of him; your servant will go and fight this Philistine." Saul said to David, "You are not able to go against this Philistine to fight with him; for you are just a boy, and he has been a warrior from his youth. But David said to Saul, "Your servant used to keep sheep for his father; and whenever a lion or a bear came, and took a lamb from the flock, I went after it and struck it down, rescuing the lamb from its mouth; and if it turned against me, i would catch it by the jaw, strike it down, and kill it. Your servant has killed both lions and bears; and this uncircumcised Philistine shall be like one of them, since he has defied the armies of the living God." David said, "The Lord, who saved me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear, will save me from the hand of this Philistine." So Saul said to David, "Go, and may the Lord be with you!" 1 Samuel 17:31-37 (NRSV)


Madeline Twooney is from North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. For three years she faced one challenge after another. She was diagnosed with burnout and depression, and she had to give up her profession as a teacher.

Since then, Madeline has had to deal not only with her recovery, but she has also struggled to pay the rent, other bills, and even to but groceries. However, God has taken care of her husband and her every time.

After each moment of uncertainty, Madeline realized how much more she trusted God. Through each of these trials, she saw God strengthening their faith for the next challenge. They learned to be confident in God and God's promises for their lives.

Madeline thinks David might have felt the same way when he faced Goliath in the valley of Elah. Although David was a youth and an unseasoned soldier, God had been strengthening and training him as he tended his father's sheep. God helped David protect the flock from the attack of lions or bears, and David learned to trust God. On the day of battle, David was confident in God's ability to grant him victory against the Philistine champion.

With this lesson in mind, we can trust in God's plan as we face our own lions and bears - or giants.

Prayer: Wonderful God, thank you for strengthening our faith in times of adversity. Help us to fulfill your purposes for our lives, in Jesus' name, amen.


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