The Biggest Threat to the Church

I can only imagine what it must have been like for David - the David in the Bible I mean. Coming face to face with a giant who would have sent most of us running for the hills. In case you’ve never read this story, seen the flannel graph, or watched the Veggie Tales®, here’s a quick recap.

In the Israelite corner we have David. Average size shepherd boy delivering cheese and crackers to his brothers at the scene of a stagnant war. Why stagnant? Because in the Philistine corner we have Goliath. Behemoth warrior he-man who makes Shaq look like Pee-Wee Herman. Goliath has issued a triple dog dare challenge for a mono a mono resolution to the war - but every “soldier” for Israel is as scared as a turkey before Thanksgiving.

Except for David - who technically isn’t a soldier, which makes it even more surprising that he was willing to not only face this giant, but bring him down to Chinatown! This wasn’t even a contest - it was a blowout of Biblical proportions.

David faced this giant because behind the giant he saw a bigger Giant. Compared to the God of the universe, Goliath was the uber-wuss of all time.

Funny how perspective can change everything, don’t you think? Goliath from a human viewpoint looked invincible and indomitable. Just like the giants we face in our lives - which is why we must see the Giant behind the giants, step out on the battlefield with confidence, use the gifts God has given us, and be victorious in the battle.

By the way, did you know that one of the biggest giants facing our society is the plight of our teenagers? I read once that the church is always just one generation away from extinction, which is why we need to equip our young people to defeat the giants in their lives before it is too late for all of us.

And what giants are they facing?

Porn…lust…drinking…drugs…self-hatred…suicide. These words used to be descriptors of a relatively small part of society, back in the day when the general teenage culture looked something like scenes from Leave it to Beaver.

That was then…this is now. Those words are the colors that paint a picture of today’s American adolescent world.

How do I know? They told me. These words are from 30+ foot sheet of butcher paper that we make available for students that attend Dare 2 Share conferences to write on. One of the major themes for the Revolution Conference is facing and defeating the “giants” in our lives through the power of God - just like David did with Goliath. The idea behind the butcher paper is to give the students an opportunity to write down the names of the “giants” that they face every day.

As you might expect, we got more than we bargained for. Of course we knew that the teenage world of today is vastly different from a generation ago, but quite honestly our hearts were broken at the reoccurring themes of intense pain and sadness scrawled in every square inch of the paper. Here are a few more examples of what I’m talking about:

“The cuts on my arm…the pain in my heart…the death that I seek.”

“Going to school everyday and looking into the eyes of the guy who raped me.”

Obviously Satan has made significant inroads into destroying this precious generation of teens, which is why we desperately need your prayers. The Dare 2 Share Revolution Conference is giving students all over the nation help and hope as they struggle through these issues and find victory in Christ. Please pray specifically that God uses Dare 2 Share and the thousands of youth leaders who attend the conferences to make a difference in the lives of these teens who are walking through the valley of giants!
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Lane Palmer is the Youth Ministries Specialist for Dare 2 Share Ministries in Arvada, Colo., where he works with youth leaders and students, equipping them to be effective in sharing the gospel. For more information on Dare 2 Share Ministries, please visit www.dare2share.org. Find out how Dare 2 Share Ministries and Focus on the Family® are working together to capture the hearts of this generation of teenagers, visit www.capturetheirhearts.com Send feedback to lane@dare2share.org.