Monday, March 11, 2013

Slaying our Goliaths


"You come against me with sword and spear and javelin, but I come against you in the name of the Lord Almighty, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied."
 
David in 1 Samuel 17:45
 
I recall vividly how I felt one day several years ago. I felt like a very small person trying to do something that was far beyond her. I wanted to reduce the stigma towards mental illness, especially the misunderstanding and poor support that exists in the church.
 
I felt like David facing Goliath. The difference was, that although David was probably not a fully grown man, he was confident. I wasn't confident at all. My Goliath looked like one huge messy mass. David aimed for the giant's forehead, but I couldn't see the face nor the arms or legs. How could I possibly attack when I had no place to aim?
 
David inspired me.
 
Through David, God reminded me that He has the strength and the power to fight such wars. With Him, all things are possible. (Matthew 19:26) Fighting stigma and working for the good of people living with mental illness is God's work - not mine alone. All I have to do is to be God's foot-soldier, to go where He leads, and say the words He gives me to say. Looking at it that way gave me courage and strength. When I remember that God is in charge, I can do the work. He helps me devise plans and helps me know what to aim for.
 
We all have Goliaths in our lives; we have many different kinds of challenges. It could be coping with illness or learning to cope with a difficult job. It could be building a stronger marriage or helping make our community a better place.
 
If we could only trust God to help us deal with our Goliaths, as David did... It might take time; we will probably have to be patient. And God could have plans for us that differ from our own. I know from experience though, that we can trust Him to know best. Trusting Him and being prepared to join Him in the work can leave us pleasantly surprised with the outcome -to say nothing of the process.
 
I haven't always trusted God, too often trying to work under my own strength, frustrated - even suffering - as a result. But in the end, I do know He has taken the Living Room support ministry to places that have surprised me. The email ministry is one of them. My job is to follow God, one little step at a time. It's a wonderful mystery tour own which only He knows where we are going.
 
May God bless you richly and may He take you on an amazing mystery tour of your own as you slay your Goliaths.
 
 
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4 comments:

Christina Rose said...

From the beginning, you have always been an inspiration to me, Marja. I still aspire to have a Living Room, once my courage builds. How many years does it take? How many name changes? How many blogs? Lol. I don't know. I do know that I truly believe in everything you have always stood for and done. You have such a huge gift that you've shared with the world! Thank you for your ministry. Love, Jena (christinarose-afterthoughts.blogspot.com)
PS- I don't expect you to always be able to keep up with me but I will always be keeping up with you. Love you.

marja said...

Thank you so much for your note, Jena. It was so good to hear from you. Are you ever in the Vancouver area? If you ever are on the 2nd or 4th Friday of the month, it would be SO good to see you at the group.

Love, marja

Christina Rose said...

I may be able to come down sometime this spring/summer now that I'm working part time and the weather is letting up. I will make sure to let you know if I'm heading your way :) It would be SO good to see you too :)

marja said...

That would be very neat, Jen. (sorry I called you Jena in my previous comment.) How good it would be to see you again! Stay in touch, ok?