My Giant “Ishbi-benob” By Laura Butler
It is 9pm. I’m rushing around trying to get last minute chores done and I hear from the other room, “MOM!!! Come read me my bedtime story!!” I replied, “Ok Dawson”. As I sat beside him, he requests the giant story again. This makes the third night in a row, I thought to myself. I pull out the story book of David and Goliath. I began to read as I have the last two nights, but this time the atmosphere was different. I could feel the presence of God with us listening. I continued to read and began hearing the Holy Spirit speak to me. I came to the part where David was trying on the King’s armor and it didn’t fit. It looked great, but did not fit and was too much for David to carry. David could not even walk with it on! God spoke to me…”Laura be yourself, be who I created you to be.”
I paused and was quickly alerted, “MOM!” I started back in and read the words, “David stopped at the dry brook and picked up five smooth stones…” Then, God started to speak to me again. “Laura, I gave David the tools to slay his giant in a dry brook, I took Moses to the backside of the desert, the driest place and gave him the tools to face his giant/Pharaoh. Laura it is in your driest and darkest moments where you feel at your weakest that I am at my strongest and I will give you the tools you need to fight the giants in your life.”
I ended the story, prayed with my little man and those words stuck with me. The next morning as I was on my way to work, I replayed over and over what had happened and what God told me.
I have faced giants many times in life, but these past four years I have been face to face with my goliath, and he has been slain. This giant came at me and was much larger and stronger than I expected. This giant “Ishbi-benob” launched and struck my family with cancer, stress, depression, distrust, false accusations, hate, bitterness, loneliness, loss of security, and hopelessness (Look up 2 Samuel 21). I felt weary and exhausted in this dark battlefield! Like David, “Ishbi-benob” had me cornered. I thought to myself: this is it for me- all I worked hard for, fought for, and believed in is gone. I gave all I could and there is no more! I became a spiritual zombie. I kept doing the things I knew to do. I kept praying, fasting, and even though it was not as much, I stayed in the Word.
NEVER let go of your walk with God. Do not let go of convictions you once felt because you no longer feel them at the moment. HOLD ON! Those are lies being launched at you from the enemy! Obedience is better than sacrifice! You may be at your lowest and feel forsaken by friends and loved ones, BUT GOD said HE will never leave you nor forsake you. You may not feel like attending church events or services but go anyway. It is not about you! It is about HIM!
Your “Ishbi-benob” may have you beaten and weary, leaving you at your weakest. You might feel cornered like there is no way out of this and it is hopeless! The devil is a liar! God will send you an Abishail! Abishail was son of Zeruiah; he came out of nowhere and rescued David by slaying the giant Ishbi-benob! Someone from David’s army came to his rescue! STAY in the CHURCH. People watch you, they learn from you. You may not know it or see it, but they are learning from you! They were taught from watching you slay your Goliath. Their faith was built by what God did in you. Forsake not the assembly!
Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 says, “Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labor. For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow; but woe to him that is alone when he falleth; for he hath not another to help him up” (KJV).
David may have killed Goliath alone but he needed help, because the giants kept coming and they continued to get bigger. Bro. Ray a great pastor in Trumann, AR preached a message a few years ago that has stuck with me throughout this trying time in my life. Bro. Ray said, “When you are a child you fight chicken pox, but as an adult that virus comes back bigger and stronger as shingles.” I had to remind myself I fought similar battles before in my past and God saw me through, even though they came back with vengeance. I know God will see me through again!
Your giants will continue to grow as you grow. We need to be ready to SEEK HELP, and ACCEPT HELP. We must be ready to pass the battle on to those who we have trained. David killed Goliath, had help killing Ishbi-benob, then the last 3 giants his army defeated. When you are on the mountain top looking back over the valleys, brooks, and the deserts you came through and you see your brother or sister fighting for their life, do not point your finger down and condemn them from the peaceful mountain “high” top. For two reasons: first, you will not be there long, and second they need you to help them out of where you have already been! Always remember your present struggle and fight is preparing you to be a blessing to someone else down the road!
I was told once to look around at those who have served Him faithfully and know the Word of God. Look at the giants they had to face. Some battles took years to fight, some not so much. Some battles they felt could be their last. So NO ONE is untouchable. EVERYONE is made of flesh and everyone is vulnerable to the enemy’s attacks! If there was one thing I have learned in the past very challenging four years, it is “the key is not so much receiving the victory over the battle, it is the knowledge that the battle continues! We will be facing giants until the Lord calls us home or until He returns. So never forget that yesterday’s victories will not kill today’s giants and keep PRESSING ON!”
Laura Butler is 31 years old and is the mother of six-year-old Dawson. She is married to one of the best drummers in the UPC, Christopher Butler. They have been married for almost 10 years! Laura Butler has served as a youth pastor for three years. She enjoys the opportunities to speak to her ladies prayer group, and helps her pastor’s wife decorate for events in her church. Laura loves to shop, drink flavorful creamers with little coffee (lol), laugh at her own own jokes, decorate, do crafts, spend time with her family and friends, and attend basketball and derby events! Fall is her favorite season. She loves to laugh and have a good time! Laura attends the First UPC Church of Kennett pastored by Bro. Donnie Sheerin.