(Editor's note: This continues our series on "Facing Your Giants." Here's the story of David and Goliath on which the series is built, while past lessons have focused on anger, fear, worry and greed.)
While we may not ever go toe-to-toe with a physical giant like David did, we all deal with hardships and temptations in our lives. Some kind of giant is standing before you, taunting you and harassing you.
One of those giants may be comfort. Comfort is defined as a state of physical ease and freedom from pain or constraint. Wait a minute — shouldn’t we all desire that safety and security? Shouldn’t we want order in our lives, not chaos? We like to relax after a long day at work, perhaps by watching our favorite TV show or spending time with the family. We enjoy that in our life. However, comfort is a giant — something that hurts us and taunts us — when it becomes a staple in our life.
At the beginning of the year, I issued a challenge to everyone — do one thing you’ve never done before; to go outside your comfort zone. Are you doing, or do you plan to do, one thing you’ve never done before?
Spiritual growth requires doing some difficult things. Notice the difference between Moses and Isaiah — do you have a “Lord, please send someone else” mindset (Moses), or “Lord, send me” mentality (Isaiah)? Because, you cannot tell the Lord to send someone else. Who ended up going to Egypt? Moses did (Ex. 4:14-20).
So, how do we defeat the giant of comfort?
You must desire to do something great for the Lord (Matt. 14:28): Peter saw Jesus walking on the water, and he wanted to do it, too. We need the desire to do great things for God.
You must get out of the boat (Matt. 14:29): It’s one thing for Peter to want to do it and ask to do it. It’s another to climb out of the boat and set foot on the water. It took a great deal of courage to get out of the boat.
You must be honest with yourself (II Cor. 13:5): Confront, head-on, the things that you know God wants you to do. Prioritize what God says is important, not what we think is important.
You must not limit yourself to what is expected or what is required (Eph. 2:10): People get acclimated to that. That’s who he or she is; what they can or can’t do. Do more than expected (II Cor. 8:1-5).
You must keep your focus on Jesus (Matt. 14:29-30): Peter gets out of the boat and does the impossible, but then he takes his eyes off Jesus. Every step of the way, we need to focus on Jesus. He’s our strength—the author and finisher of our faith.