The story of David & Goliath is one that's familiar to most Christians and sports fans, as we regularly refer to "David beating Goliath" when a team upsets a favored opponent. Yet there's so much more to this story of faith and courage. Read the scripture below with your team and discuss it. Remind them that with God, anything is possible as an individual or team. Close with the prayer below.
A Reading from the First Book of Samuel: 1 Samuel 17:3-9, 11, 31-36, 42-43, 45-50
And the Philistines stood on the mountain on the one side, and Israel stood on the mountain on the other side, with a valley between them. And there came out from the camp of the Philistines a champion named Goliath, of Gath, whose height was six cubits and a span. He had a helmet of bronze on his head, and he was armed with a coat of mail, and the weight of the coat was five thousand shekels of bronze. And he had greaves of bronze upon his legs, and a javelin of bronze slung between his shoulders. And the shaft of his spear was like a weaver’s beam, and his spear’s head weighed six hundred shekels of iron; and his shield-bearer went before him. He stood and shouted to the ranks of Israel, ”Why have you come out to draw up for battle? Am I not a Philistine, and are you not servants of Saul? Choose a man for yourselves, and let him come down to me. If he is able to fight with me and kill me, then we will be your servants; but if I prevail against him and kill him, then you shall be our servants and serve us.“ When Saul and all Israel heard these words of the Philistine, they were dismayed and greatly afraid.
When the words which David spoke were heard, they repeated them before Saul; and he sent for him. And David said to Saul, ”Let no man’s heart fail because of him; your servant will go and fight with this Philistine.“ And Saul said to David, ”You are not able to go against this Philistine to fight with him; for you are but a youth, and he has been a man of war from his youth.“ But David said to Saul, ”Your servant used to keep sheep for his father; and when there came a lion, or a bear, and took a lamb from the flock, I went after him and smote him and delivered it out of his mouth; and if he arose against me, I caught him by his beard, and smote him and killed him. Your servant has killed both lions and bears; and this uncircumcised Philistine shall be like one of them, seeing he has defied the armies of the living God.“ And when the Philistine looked, and saw David, he disdained him; for he was but a youth, ruddy and comely in appearance. And the Philistine said to David, ”Am I a dog, that you come to me with sticks?“ And the Philistine cursed David by his gods.
Then David said to the Philistine, ”You come to me with a sword and with a spear and with a javelin; but I come to you in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. This day the Lord will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you down, and cut off your head; and I will give the dead bodies of the host of the Philistines this day to the birds of the air and to the wild beasts of the earth; that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel, and that all this assembly may know that the Lord saves not with sword and spear; for the battle is the Lord’S and he will give you into our hand.“ When the Philistine arose and came and drew near to meet David, David ran quickly toward the battle line to meet the Philistine. And David put his hand in his bag and took out a stone, and slung it, and struck the Philistine on his forehead; the stone sank into his forehead, and he fell on his face to the ground.
So David prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and with a stone, and struck the Philistine, and killed him; there was no sword in the hand of David.
Lord, in the story of David vs. Goliath you show us that with God, anything is possible. Help us to be like David by being faithful to God and praying for his help in difficult situations. May we use the gifts you have given each of us to glorify you and help our team. Help us all to be courageous in striving for our goals and bless us that we might grow in physical skill, mental fortitude and our relationship with You. Amen.