What’s your weapon of choice?
There is so much power behind the story of David and Goliath. I have always been told it is a story of David’s bravery and faith that God would help overcome Goliath even though the odds were stacked against him. But lately, as I have found my faith growing and deepening, I think there is more to the story. I used to think the reason David chose a sling as his weapon because he was just a young ‘un, and liked to use a slingshot, and he had more faith than the warriors around him - so he trusted God would make it all work out right anyway. Hmmm. I think I was wrong about that. I think David knew the power of a sling. Sling bearers were an important part of the military. But there was an entire army right there trembling in fear. Seems like they should have known the power of a sling, so it is kindof amazing nobody else thought of it, but it also explains a lot about David. He was smart.
David knew what he could do with a sling, and he knew God was not going to let Goliath stand. He assessed the situation, and went out to fight in spite of the fact that the King and other warriors thought he was crazy. Goliath was huge, and he had a spear, so the normal protocol would be for a huge warrior with a spear to go out to fight. That was expected and the norm. But David didn’t see it that way - and he used what he had to make a difference! That’s the thing that sets David apart from everyone else who was there that day. His weapon of choice was the sling, and when he used it, he set into motion a series of circumstances that changed history for the Israelite people.
I feel like we have done something similar with The Torch. Not that I necessarily think we are changing history, but Sarah and I experienced the system, and deeply believed there had to be another way to help people. We used what we had. It wasn’t money or power or influence. Life isn't always about money and power and influence, which is good, because we didn't have any. What we had were Sarah's culinary gifts and business sense, my abilities to communicate and make connections, our compassion for people in need (which I personally think is everybody at one time or another), our faith in God, and our willingness to allow Him to move us to try something new.
Believe me, there were scoffers, and doubters, and critics. We were even told our Torch business plan was dumb, and that it would never work - and from a conventional business sense, it shouldn’t! But for all those Negative Nancies, there are just as many people who are able to step away from the conventional way of doing things, and are ready to approach problems from outside the box. And they have become our encouragers and supporters. And God has taken the gifts and talents we have, and is using them to reach out to people in a new way. We are trying to let our gifts be His hands and feet.
And many other people have gotten involved who are doing the same thing. Did you know we have crafts and games at the food truck now? NOT because of Sarah and me! Not at all. To put it bluntly, we both suck at crafts. Between the two of us, there isn't enough craft talent to fill a thimble, if you know what that is. But one day our friend, Melanie, asked if it would be okay for her to bring craft materials and make crafts with Torch people. What a blessing! There is no way we could have made that happen. But Melanie chose to use what she had - crafting and artistic abilities - and make a difference. And it’s working! Even now that we are outside! It’s working! So cool! We are at more than one location now, but our friend Kayln has stepped in and is making crafts happen at the place Melanie can’t attend. Their unique perspectives make it so much fun for the people joining us for dinner.
Then there is our friend, Jen. She is a hair stylist. She volunteered last summer to give children free back-to-school haircuts at our back-to-school event. Jen is a gifted hair stylist who is now using her gifts - and faith - in her mobile salon - Inner Light Traveling Salon. She has told me several times that what we have done at The Torch inspired her to do what she is doing. To that I say, "Yippeeeeee!" She gets it! And I can't forget another great example, my pastor, Scott Crownover. He is the same way. He is a professional actor who realized he could use his gifts and talents as an actor to start a church - for artists of all sorts! And now we have the greenroom! His faith, plus his gifts and talents are a blessing to so many people - and I personally have been inspired and pushed to grow closer to God because of Scott's step of faith. Who knew hair cuts and acting could be formidable weapons? But they are!
So, therein lies the key that David apparently understood intuitively. Let your gifts and talents set your direction, then let your mind be open to what God is doing in the world around you - and find the way you can step out in faith and do something to change the world. Do it differently than everyone else, because that has such an impact! David's choice of weapon was a sling, Sarah and I cook and organize and plan, Melanie's and Kayln's are crafts, Jen's is styling hair, and Scott's is acting and speaking.