Five Smooth Stones

Have you ever wrestled with being overwhelmed, overworked, overextended, ultra-emotional and down right exhausted?

Has your schedule been so jammed packed that you find that there is more to do then time to do it?

If so, then it’s confirmed, you have or are facing “giants.”

So when we experience these things, how can we handle them in a healthy manner?  Let’s tune into the scene below for the answer.

*my adaptation is based on 1 Samuel 17

*   *   *   *

“My king, have you heard the words of the boy?” spoke the captain of the king’s army, “He speaks with chastisement and adds to the grief within the camp.  40 days we have endured the unbearable rant of the Philistine giant; must we now endure the insolence of this youth?!”

Saul and David.“What is this that the youth speaks?” replied the king.

He shouts inquiries to men of battle saying, “For who is this uncircumcised Philistine, that he should defy the armies of the living God?” and scours as to why he stands unchallenged!

“Has he not seen the Philistine’s champion?” asked the king.

“He has seen him my lord.”

“And yet he continues his retort?” posed the king.

“He does sire.”

“Bring this lad to me.” commanded the king.

*   *   *   *

The boy stood in silence as Israel’s king surveyed the youth.  Studying the stature of the boy he  pondered the brave words spoken by one who made his living tending lambs.

His curiosity begged the question, how could one so young possess such confidence and passion?

Rising, King Saul approached the boy.

“It has been reported that you have seen and heard the Philistine giant that has plagued the armies of Israel for the past forty days,  AND  that you question why he has not yet been silenced.  Is this true?”

English: David the Shepherd Boy“It is true.” answered the boy. “May your servant speak freely my king?”

Again, the king of Israel found the confidence of the youth remarkable and in his curiosity he granted the boy freedom to speak.

“Let no man’s heart fail because of this giant that walks among the Philistine’s.  I will go and fight him.”

But the laughter of the king interrupted the lad and through his chuckle he responded, “You are not able to go against this Philistine, you are but a youth, and he is a man of war.”

“It is true, that I am a youth, but your servant used to keep his father’s sheep, and when a lion or bear came and removed a lamb from the flock, I went out after it and struck it, delivering the lamb from its mouth.”

“When it rose against me, I caught it by its beard and killed it.  I have killed both lion and bear and this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them because he has defiled the armies of the living God!”

Astonished, the king replied, “You possess a confidence found in men of valor but yet you have never fought in the armies of the king.  Pray tell me where does your assurance come from?”

“It comes from the Lord who delivered me from the paw of the lion and bear.  He will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine as well.” answered the youth.

“What is your name lad?” asked the king.

“It is David.”

*   *   *   *

King Saul deliberated the lad’s request.  He admired the boy’s courage for he had not seen the likes of it since the Philistine’s giant challenged the armies of Israel.

His thoughts ran deep as he considered the boys faith in the one true God.  Thoughts that brought memories to a time that he himself sought the favor of the Lord.  A time that he had long forsaken.

After much deliberation, Saul found himself wrestling with the likelihood of the youth’s survival.  He believed it was minimal and was greatly conflicted, for he sensed the impassioned faith of the boy would challenge the giant with or without his approval.

With this thought in mind, King Saul called for his servants and commissioned them to fetch his battle armor for he wanted the youth properly equipped.

Turning to the boy he said, “Go, and the Lord be with you!”

*   *   *   *

When King Saul’s servants had returned with his armor, he fashioned David with his coat of mail, armor, and helmet.  But when David fastened his sword and attempted to walk, he could not for he had never worn the likes of them before.

David and Goliath, a colour lithograph by Osma...

“My king, I cannot walk with these, for I have not tested them before.”

So David removed them, picked up his staff,  and chose five smooth stones from a nearby brook and put them in his bag.  He then pulled out his sling and drew near to the giant.

“This day the Lord will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you and take your head.”

” This day I will give the carcasses of the camp of the Philistines to the birds of the air and the wild beasts of the earth, that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel.”

” Then all this assembly shall know that the Lord does not save with sword and spear, for the battle is the Lord’s and He will give you into our hands.”

Thus the giant Goliath began to make his charge bearing his sword, spear and javelin.  David hastened and ran to meet him, pulling out a stone, placing it in his sling and slung it, striking the giant in his forehead causing him to fall dead.

When the Philistines saw that their champion had been killed, they fled.

*   *   *   *

David and Goliath found in 1 Samuel 17 is no doubt a story steeped in undaunted faith.  Goliath, was most definitely an imposing obstacle, but he was not the first “giant” that David had faced.

Long before Goliath, David had encountered lions and bears, giants in their own right, which served as “proving ground” in the development of David’s faith.

  • He learned through these experiences, that he was not equipped to vanquish his foe’s solely on his own and had become humble in spirit.
  • He understood that his strength to succeed relied directly on God.

This earned him favor in the sight of the Lord and proved that he could be a servant in which God could use.  Thus when the Philistines gathered their armies to wage battle against Israel, God knew exactly who to call on to bring Glory to His name.

Recently as I have had to deal with an unbelievably packed schedule (some of my making, some not).  I found myself greatly lacking in the ability to coast through it without emotional strain.

I began to relate to the armies of Israel for the tasks had become “giants.”  I had become “thin” in dealing with them and was shrinking underneath their weight.  I had become undone. 

It was in this state that I realized that I was not able to do it all.  I needed help.  The type of help that would enable me to maintain mental and emotional health.  I needed God.

Please hear me say that this revelation did not come easy.  It took stress and distress to get my attention.

Five Smooth Stone

Crying out to the Lord and admitting my limitations was the beginning of relief.

I asked for His help and placed Him in the center of it all.  I relinquished the tasks into His care and allowed Him to prioritize and analyze their importance.

I guess you could say, I picked up five smooth stones.

Stone #1 Admitting my limitations-humility
Stone #2 Seeking His help-acknowledging that He has no limitations
Stone #3 Placing Him in the center-God is now the navigator
Stone #4 Giving Him the task- I relinquished ownership
Stone #5 Allowing Him jurisdiction –not my will, but His

Offering these “five smooth stones” to the Lord, released me from it all riding on my shoulders.   And with each stone that I handed over to the Lord, He in His loving mercy exchanged them with something much softer and beneficial for my well-being.

Exchange #1    Peace instilled
Exchange #2    Strength renewed
Exchange #3    Mental release
Exchange #4    Emotion freedom
Exchange #5    My “giants” fell

I am thankful that the account of a shepherd boy still reaches through the ages and reminds me that the battle truly belongs to the Lord, yes, even those schedules that get out of control.

It has been interesting to watch God worked it all out.  And the lessons that I’ve learned was worth the feeling of being “undone.”

As I watch things come together there is no doubt that it is not by my hand but by God’s hand (God’s slingshot).  This truly keeps me humble and hopefully makes me a servant that God can use for future work.

The next time that you are facing “giants” don’t forget to pick up your “five smooth stones.”

Trust me, your giants will fall.

Donna

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7 thoughts on “Five Smooth Stones

  1. Donna, I really love what you wrote about this. Even now as a Mom my kids count on me and I count on God!

    Three of my boys are up playing online war games. The youngest, 16, saw a bug on the window shade and said Mom come get this. LOL So I did! I didn’t really have to think about it. I just want my kids to be safe. I didn’t mean to write about that. It just happened!

    Anyway, your right we all face giants. I don’t like bugs either, but the protective Mom in me kicks in.

    David had a lot of experience protecting the flock before he met the giant. I think God builds on our past experiences to get us ready for the bigger giants we must face.

    I agree with you and think God only allows the giants to come so we will know where our strength comes from and the battle really does belong to him!

    Now if I can just teach my kids to catch their own bugs!

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  2. Dj,
    Seems like you wrote this for me too. My favorite season of the year, and work wants to rob me of all spare time for the holidays.

    I was beginning to feel bitter, but now realize that God will give me sufficient time with family to be satisfied and it has worked out that I will see most of my family on Christmas Day. Thank you for your prayers in that regard.

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  3. Wow!

    I’m proud of your wisdom and discernment to face these giants with God leading the battle. And to remind us to do the same.

    I know you were getting pretty worn out and seemed to be losing all the humanly strength you had left. I’m glad that you gave it all up to God and trusted that He would take care of you in the time of battle. And He did!

    Its pretty cool how all we have to do is put “the stones” in God’s hands and everything we were facing, “the giants”, fall instantly. –And how quickly we feel whole.–

    Thanks mom for reminding us that we need to pick up our stones and release it over to God. The battle belongs to the Lord.

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  4. Hi Donna,
    You will never know how much this touched my heart. I needed this reminder.

    I hope you do not mind me posting some of this on my facebook. I think it would encourage others. Your name would be listed. Let me know if it is okay. Melody

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  5. Bravo Mom!

    I have been waiting for this new blog, and i do say it was well worth the wait. I love the analogy of the ‘five stones’.

    What I got from it, was acknowledging the fact that you release control to God, and how we as humans grasp onto the illusion of control and take its woes. Not realizing what harm it truly can cause us emotionally and physically.

    How great is our God, that He not only allows us to have this ‘illusion of control’ but stands by ready to take it from us when we release it. Then replaces it with unconditional love and mercy.

    Like

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