God has uniquely created each of us. In that uniqueness comes unique experiences, talents and skills. As we move through life, we draw from this resource pool to meet the challenges that lie before us. There are times; however, when we face challenges that seem to dwarf the other experiences of our lives. During these times we often find ourselves being outfitted with the values, ideals and guidance of others. Out of heart felt, well intentioned motivation others begin to tell us how to meet the challenges that are before us, when in reality, God has already equipped us for the encounter.
38 Then Saul clothed David with his garments and put a bronze helmet on his head, and he clothed him with armor.
39 And David girded his sword over his armor and tried to walk, for he had not tested them. So David said to Saul, “I cannot go with these, for I have not tested them .” And David took them off.
40 And he took his stick in his hand and chose for himself five smooth stones from the brook, and put them in the shepherd’s bag which he had, even in his pouch, and his sling was in his hand; and he approached the Philistine.
The account of David’s encounter with Goliath the Philistine is one of the best known accounts of the Bible. David, a shepherd boy, goes out to do what no soldier of Israel will do….face the giant. King Saul, did what seemed appropriate. He placed his armor upon David. If David was going to fight this giant, he would need the instruments of battle…a helmet, a breastplate, a shield and a sword. There was just one problem, the armor didn’t fit. It was not meant for David, and David was not equipped to properly use it. David was trained as a shepherd, not a soldier.
David’s course of action was dictated by the resources of his life. David removed Saul’s armor and instead took hold of his shepherd’s staff. He collected 5 smooth stones from the brook and placed them in his shepherd’s bag. He grabbed hold of his familiar sling, and headed towards Goliath. Of course we know from Scripture, that David killed Goliath with one stone, launched from the sling…these were the tools of David’s life.
Too many of us are trying to live out our lives by wearing armor that belongs to someone else. When we find ourselves walking in the shoes of a parent, mentor or boss that we feel we must emulate, we are not being true to the uniqueness that God has placed into each one of us. The real question in each challenge of life is: “How do I use what God has given me to meet the challenges that are before me?” Whatever circumstance you find yourself in, you can rest assured that God has already prepared you and equipped you to not only face, but conquer the challenge.
Today if you find yourself trying to wear armor that belongs to someone else, I would encourage you to follow the example of David. Remove those pieces that are not truly yours and pick up the things that you have been equipped to utilize. Live in the fullness of who you are, the person God created you to be, not the person that someone else thinks you need to be.