Over a year has passed since I’ve been involved in any formal exercise program. This afternoon marked my first attempt of returning to an exercise class. I chose a MELT class at the Pilates studio. I wasn’t really sure how it would go. I know that my core muscles have been traumatized and that my energy levels are still quite low. I was prepared for the worst, giving myself permission to stay for only half of the class if that was all that I could do. I was pleasantly surprised that I could do the full hour. It’s not a strenuous class by any means and there were times when I struggled, but I stayed with it. I was well aware of how nervous I felt at learning how my body would react to exercise.
Today’s first reading is from 1 Samuel 17, the well-known story of David facing the Philistine giant, Goliath. David faces him with courage and confidence saying The Lord, who saved me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear, will save me from the hand of this Philistine. Walking into the Pilates studio this afternoon I felt like I was facing a giant but that I lacked David’s courage and confidence.
When we face our giants, those voices in our heads are mean-spirited. As the Philistine mocked David so do our giants mock us when we dare to come against them. They want us to feel inadequate and unworthy. They want to intimidate us and have us walk away in shame. With one smooth stone, David teaches us how to slay the giant. It is best to attack the beast right at the center of its mind games.
During the class, I became aware of my physical limitations. I felt my disappointment rising but at the same time I gained confidence and courage by facing my fears head-on. By the end of it, I felt victorious. I had stood before the giant and I had not lost. The God who has saved me from the paw of death and disaster saved me again today. Thanks be to God!
What giants do you need to face?
Are you facing them with fear or courage and confidence?
Slayer-of-Giants, Relentless Underdog, you show us again and again that we can come up against our fears and win. Fill us with the courage and confidence that we need at this time so that people will see that you are a God who has this. You are the God we can trust, the God who will save us. Amen.