Arguably the greatest gladiator match in biblical history; a one-on-one, no-holds barred brawl, winner takes it all. David and Goliath is one of the greatest ever documented fights. It was an unlikely matchup; a ruddy teenager versus a seasoned war veteran, an untested hand versus a tried champion, a boy versus a giant. It wasn’t even supposed to be a contest. Goliath, on paper, would probably have squished David the same way a sledgehammer would squish an ant. Goliath wasn’t your average fighter. According to the specs we were given, he was about 9 feet 9 inches, he was heavy and muscular, he was fully kitted down to his breeches; his body armor alone weighed about 58 kilos. He was deadly fighter, having been fighting from a young age. And he was a foul-mouthed trash talker, capable of instilling fear in the bravest of minds with his words. The Israelites cowered in fear in their camp. Dem no born any of them well no show face. Even Saul, their king and giant, no reach. So how did David, grossly under-kitted, untrained, go up against this giant and defeat him? And how does it relate to how we face our challenges today?
- Confidence and Belief: To overcome any challenge you go up against, belief and confidence are two necessary key elements. Your belief and confidence is what puts you on a level ground with whatever disadvantage a challenge is throwing at you. David went up against the giant with total belief in God and with the confidence that he could overcome him. It wasn’t as if David did not see the weapons and armor which Goliath possessed. However, he was confident he was going to battle against him with someone who was far greater than he was. Whatever challenge you face, the strength of your belief is what takes you far.
- Knowledge: When facing a challenge, it’s best to have basic knowledge about it. David did not just charge against Goliath in the heat of his passion. He found out details about the Philistine and the things which would be done for the man who would defeat him. Here, he learnt that the giant was no mere fighter and that conventional battle would be to his disadvantage. If you know what you’re up against, you know what plans to make towards the challenge. Knowledge is key, knowledge is power.
- Preparation: The plans you make beforehand determine the type of challenge you mount up. This wasn’t David’s first rodeo. He had slain beasts in the wild. Whenever a lion or bear attacked his flock of sheep, he slew it. He had trained himself in his style of combat and his previous battles served to prepare him for this encounter. You should never act without proper preparation. Plans give you a pattern so you don’t go beating about the bush. Preparation is important.
- Self-Appraisal: Knowing your abilities, what you can and can’t do, is important before you take on any challenge. There are some things which aren’t just meant for you. When David was to go up against Goliath, he was first kitted with armor and given a sword. He found it difficult to move in them and discarded them. He went ahead to go with his normal clothes and his slingshot. You shouldn’t go through a particular method or tow a path because another person has done the same. Know yourself and find out what suits you best and go with it.
- Head-on Engagement: When you are facing a challenge, there’s no need to procrastinate. No need to dilly-dally. You should face it head-on. After they faced off and trash-talked each other for a bit, David did not stand there, contemplating his next move. As soon as Goliath started coming. David charged at him. A bold and gutsy move if you ask me, considering he was just armed with a slingshot and the probability of a slingshot hitting its target isn’t so great not to talking of hitting a moving target while in motion. However, standing back isn’t an option. Dive right into it because as soon as you hesitate, it gives room for doubt.
- Completion: Make sure you see a task through to its completion; not halfway or ninety nine percent but till it’s done completely. David did not just stop at the stone hitting Goliath’s forehead, he made sure the job was seen out to the end by chopping off his head with his own sword. Seeing a task through the end requires perseverance. It requires a tough skin. It’s not always convenient but in the end, you’ll be glad you did.
P.S: I’d really appreciate comments and feedback. Thanks