Confronting the End-of-Year “Giants”


Use trust in God as your weapon to tackle late-spring Goliaths

By Sheri Wohlfert

Hands down, David and Goliath is an Old Testament favorite among the students every year. I re-read it to some students for about the tenth time not long ago and the slingshot seemed to stay in my mind (no pun intended). It’s really a crazy story when you think about it. What are the chances we could really inflict great bodily harm using a slingshot? Since I can’t hit the refrigerator with a rubber band, you can probably breathe easy if I come toward you with a slingshot, because odds are good my shot won’t be within 5 feet of my target! It was such an odd weapon of choice for David, don’t you think? I wonder what the giant must have thought as this very young soldier stood before him with it … did he find it insulting or funny or insanely ridiculous? I wonder if it made him angry or if he just wanted to burst out laughing.

So David triumphed over the Philistine with a sling and a stone … (1 Samuel 17:50)

As the school year ticks quickly away, it can seem like we meet Goliath at every turn. Assessments, spring fever, kids who aren’t where we hoped they would be academically or socially, and the often daunting list of “stuff still to cover” before the summer bell rings. It’s that time of year when I seem to be confronting the “giants” in my day with a slingshot!

Although David was able to conquer with it, I’m afraid I’m not so successful. I seem to keep missing the target and I wonder what God must think as he watches me wildly fling stones around and not really conquer the things that creep between us. I’m sure on some occasions He must have a good laugh at me; I must look like a nut throwing sand at an approaching army. I do believe I often miss the WHOLE point of the David and Goliath story and how appropriately it ties to teachers in the spring.

As Catholic educators, our job is our vocation and each battle is a chance to grow in holiness so I realize the story wasn’t about David and his slingshot at all … it was about the power of God working through an open, trusting, and expectant heart. David didn’t doubt; he just knew God would conquer. The truth is, David could have faced that enemy with a paper clip or a cotton ball and defeated him because it was the power of God that did the work — not the power of man.

I’m not so good at living that part of the story. I still think with enough practice, my slingshot and I will get better … NOT! It’s not about the size of the battle or the weapon, it’s the size of the faith and trust that determine the outcome.

The spring is hectic for us as teachers and as parents. So we’ve reached the part in the story where we need to make a choice. Either we need another weapon to slay the stress, chaos, and giants in our life or we need to let someone else aim the slingshot! Let me see … I think I’ll try a little harder to go with the second choice!

A Seed To Plant: Read the story of David and Goliath and then seriously contemplate the things you’re trying to slay with a slingshot and then figure out which ones you need to hand over to God’s precise aim.

Blessings on your day!

Sheri Wohlfert is a Catholic wife, mom, speaker, and teacher who writes from Michigan. She uses her sense of humor and her deep faith to help others discover the joy of being a child of God. Sheri also writes at JoyfulWords.org.

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