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Embrace your valley

POSTED: February 23, 2008 5:01 a.m.
Our key scripture for today is Romans 8:35-37(NIV). Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written: 'For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.' No, in all things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.
God is a God of peace, but He is also a God of war. One of the most popular stories in the Bible is the one of David and Goliath. David, a young man from Judah in Israel, was a little, redheaded shepherd boy.
The prophet Samuel came to his hometown looking to anoint a new king for Israel. God told him to go to Jesse's house to find the right man for the job. Jesse had seven sons who were older and much taller in stature than his youngest son, David.
The older sons all looked the part, but they were all rejected. God was not looking at their appearance, He was looking at their hearts.
Samuel asked them to bring David in and they all waited until he came in from the sheep pen. God's choice for king was the eighth son. David was anointed to be king, and he went right back to caring for the sheep.
But that is not how the story ended. Israel goes to war with the Philistines. Their champion is a nine-foot giant, Goliath. The Philistine army is stationed on one hill and the Israelites on another. Twice a day, for 40 days, Goliath goes into the valley between the armies to challenge the Israelites to send a man down to fight him. The Israelite army is at a stalemate, terrorized and traumatized by an "uncircumcised Philistine." This is a mammoth of a man with words that ring out like a bullhorn when he is shouting threats at them.   
Have you ever faced a problem like that? Some issue, situation or circumstance that constantly screams defeat at you. This is when you apply today's key scripture and remind yourself that you are more than a conqueror. God will set you up for victory.
Let's continue our story. David comes to the battlefront to visit his brothers and he hears Goliath. He asks his brothers about the status of the battle, but his oldest brother scolds him and tells him to go home to the sheep. But David refuses and asks to fight the giant. The military officers report this to Saul. After consulting with Saul, David prepares to confront Goliath. He goes to a brook and chooses five smooth stones. And with a slingshot and one of the stones he smites Goliath, and kills him, dead! Then he decapitates him and takes his head back to Saul for a testimony of victory.   
God had anointed and appointed David for that battle. The battle took place in Judah, which is translated praise. When they gave God the praise, He would give them the victory! David himself was from Judah and while he was tending sheep, a lion and a bear attacked him and he'd killed them both. Through experience he'd learned how to turn his problems around with praise and his worries around with worship. Before he ran into the valley he proclaimed that God would give that giant's head into his hand. And that everyone watching would know that there is a God in Israel.
Remember, you cannot be a victor, if you're acting like a victim. Don't allow yourself to be harassed by tormenting devils. Grab your spiritual slingshot and this word of encouragement and charge into your valley.
Here is a quote from my overseer, Rod Parsley, pastor of World Harvest Church in Columbus Ohio, "Your valley is where your giants come to die."   

Deason is pastor of the Liberty Prayer Chapel and director of the Liberty County Manna House.
 

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