A stone hurled in faith always finds its target

By Jan Davis
Special to The PREVIEW
Darkness enveloped the pasture as danger lurked in the crevices of the rocks. In the silence of the night, bears and lions preyed on the newborn lambs. David stood guard to save them from imminent death.
His handmade slingshot and a few stones served him well. Years in the pasture where he tended his father’s sheep taught him to prepare for unforeseen dangers. With every beast killed, David grew stronger in his abilities, courage and faith.
A few weeks earlier, Jesse, David’s father, summoned him from the fields. Samuel, the distinguished prophet of Israel, requested his presence at the evening festivities. The youngest of eight, David preferred the company of his sheep over the raucous voices from his father’s tents. In the early morning light, Samuel anointed David to be the second King of Israel.
Yet nothing changed. His brothers treated him as their young and naive sibling. He remained in his father’s house and guarded sheep while his brothers battled the Philistines. Jesse gave him the duties of an errand boy to carry food to his brothers that historic day.
Loud jeers disturbed the quiet scene in the valley below. As David drew near the camp of the Israelites, the source of the noise towered over the armies of the Philistines. Goliath stood in front of his troops and spewed obscene threats toward the God of Israel. A righteous anger rose inside of David. How dare a filthy oaf slander the name of God.
David approached his brothers in the camp and found the Israelite army hunkered down in fear of the vulgar gentile. No one stepped forward with the courage and determination necessary to accept the challenge. He sought out King Saul for permission to face the Philistine leader. Saul attempted to talk David out of such a ridiculous idea — a probable and certain death to the untrained, ill-equipped young boy. He lacked the weapons of warfare required to fight a skilled soldier.
David walked to the stream and collected five smooth stones — one for Goliath and the other four in case Goliath’s brothers dared to challenge him.
Each stone reminded him of a different time and place when he killed a bear or lion. His confidence grew as he placed them in his pouch.
He examined each rock for size and shape. The stone needed to fit firmly inside the slingshot. The smoothness, weight and shape helped determine the accuracy when hurled through the air towards its target. David prepared himself for the unknown with skills learned as a shepherd. He killed the giant with one well-placed stone to the forehead.
David chose the familiar over the unfamiliar armor offered by King Saul. A skilled marksman, he carried all he needed to slay the mighty warrior. Faith in the God of Israel, a simple slingshot and five smooth stones.
To possess giant-slaying faith, we must trust in God. What God did in the past He promises to do in the future. Our faith increases each time we defeat the enemy.
God equips us with more than enough weapons of warfare. When a Goliath rises up and threatens to kill and destroy us, we draw from our pouch of past victories. We carry into each conflict victory stones, weathered smoothed for efficiency and accuracy by the Holy Spirit to defeat Satan on his battlefield. With every battle fought and won, our faith stones become seasoned, tested and proven.
Goliath, huge in man’s eyes, becomes insignificant in the presence of God. A stone hurled in faith always finds its mark. Because of Jesus, Goliath falls.
“And he took his staff in his hand, and chose five smooth stones out of the brook, and put them in a shepherd’s bag which he had, even in a scrip; and his sling was in his hand: and he drew near to the Philistine.” — I Samuel 17:40 (KJV).
I love you, but Jesus loves you more.

This story was posted on October 11, 2018.