How do you know you’re defeated? When you quit! Ten years ago, the gripping story of mountain-climber Aron Ralston made media headlines. While climbing alone in Utah’s Canyonlands National Park, Ralston fell into a crevice and was pinned against the canyon wall by an 800-pound boulder. For five agonizing days, Ralston attempted to lift and break the boulder without success. Seeing no other way of survival, Ralston made the decision to cut off the lower part of his arm using a dull utility knife. He then rappelled down a 65-foot wall and began hiking the eight miles to his vehicle. Following a chance meeting with a family of hikers, Ralston received food and water and a rescue team was called. It was reported that it took thirteen men, a winch and a hydraulic jack to move the boulder and remove Ralson’s arm. Under extreme conditions, Ralston refused to give up hope.
The story of David and Goliath is an Old Testament classic. For forty days, a 9-foot Philistine giant named Goliath challenged someone from the Israelite army to fight him. No one volunteered. It was then that the young shepherd boy David accepted the challenge. Despite unlikely odds, there was no quit in David. He had developed great courage and fighting skill by protecting his sheep from the wild animals that preyed on them. After taking five stones from the creek bed, David stepped on the battlefield. He boldly proclaimed that he came in the name of God and that God would be victorious. With one perfect shot from his sling, David killed Goliath. The rock did not just hit Goliath, the Bible says, “the stone sank into his forehead” much like a high-velocity bullet. After seeing their hero defeated, the Philistine army made a hasty retreat. David did not give up, he stepped up! David knew, even in the face of incredible odds, if God was on his side, there was hope.
Lord God, you are our hope in all circumstances. Teach us to focus on You rather than the giants we face on life’s battlefield. May we boldly proclaim Your name and expect victory. AMEN.