The Battle of Containment

The battle of containment is the GREATEST fight of faith you will ever fight.

In the battle of containment the devil works tirelessly to:
• Hide necessary resources
• Distract and hinder those involved

• Put blinders on your purpose

Satan can't stop what you have already possessed, but he will violently attack the promise of what is to come which is your unrealized potential, and those things you are standing in faith for.

In 1 Samuel 17 we find the classic story of victory over overwhelming odds when young David faced a bigger than life Goliath. David was at a critical crossroads of his development as his destiny began to unfold.

Would he become contained like those around him or would he break free into God's great big wonderful plan for his life? We each have that choice to make every day.

Now we know the end of the story how God gave young David an amazing victory over the giant. But let's back up and discover three main obstacles that David had to overcome to win his battle of containment.

There will always be these three obstacles that stand between you and your victory over Goliath. As big as Goliath was for David, these three challenges are even bigger.

These three obstacles were the difference between containment or breakthrough for David – and will be for you!

David had to overcome:

1. Inferiority placed on him by others.

When they chose the presidential lineup from which the king would be selected, he was left out! David was not there!

When they arrived, Samuel saw Eliab and thought, “Surely the Lord’s anointed stands here before the Lord.” But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”
Then Jesse called Abinadab and had him pass in front of Samuel. But Samuel said, “The Lord has not chosen this one either.” Jesse then had Shammah pass by, but Samuel said, “Nor has the Lord chosen this one.” Jesse had seven of his sons pass before Samuel, but Samuel said to him, “The Lord has not chosen these.” So he asked Jesse, “Are these all the sons you have?”
“There is still the youngest,” Jesse answered. “He is tending the sheep.” Samuel said, “Send for him; we will not sit down until he arrives.” So he sent for him and had him brought in. He was glowing with health and had a fine appearance and handsome features.
Then the Lord said, “Rise and anoint him; this is the one.” So Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him in the presence of his brothers, and from that day on the Spirit of the Lord came powerfully upon David.
-  1 Samuel 16:6-13 (NIV)

The people of the day, like today, were moved by outward things like beauty, physique, eloquence, education, charisma, persuasiveness and charm. This would be man's priority list of what would make a successful king.

They left David out – he was the youngest, smallest, no experience, no track record. “Oh, he was the one who watched the sheep.”

You better be secure in who God made you to be, because when everyone is looking elsewhere, you can develop an inferiority complex.

Inferiority placed on you by others can be bigger than your Goliath. You're not good enough. You're damaged goods. You've messed up too many time. You're divorced. You're single. You're a woman. You're married. You have too many kids. You're too dark... too light... too young... too old.

When people pre-judge you by what they see, or by your past, be careful. Don’t let it get in your thinking or you'll start believing that those things really matter. They will fill your heart with fear and anxiety which will paralyze you and can contain you every time.

You can develop the attitude that says, "Oh, well there's nothing I can do." So you sit back and become bitter, resentful and angry which opens the door to a victim mentality. Everybody owes me! And we go through life as a whiner with a losers limp. All the whole God has a detailed plan waiting for you to possess.

When nobody knows you and cares about you, your God knows you and cares passionately about you.

David had to overcome:

1. Inferiority placed on him by others.
2. Restrictions placed on him by those closest to him.

Now Eliab his oldest brother heard when he spoke to the men; and Eliab’s anger was aroused against David, and he said, “Why did you come down here? And with whom have you left those few sheep in the wilderness? I know your pride and the insolence of your heart, for you have come down to see the battle.” And David said, “What have I done now? Is there not a cause?”
- I Samuel 17:28-29 (NKJV)

Now his containment is getting closer to home, it's Eliab his oldest brother. And what makes this even tougher he's Saul's number one general. See David is okay as long as he remains the little shepherd boy attending his father's sheep.If he stays a shepherd – no problem. But, he steps out into his destiny – big problem.

People, your family, those closest to you, often times try to contain you as you step out from your past to step into what you were born to do. Now why of all people did his brother come against him? Because Eliab is embarrassed by his little brother's confidence in God which now is exposing Saul's #1 general's enormous fear and unbelief.

Often times when you step out under God's direction many people won't like it, not necessarily you personally, but your faith exposes their fears, doubts, complacency, small thinking, and how contained they really are.

Your spirit of faith should inspire them, but it makes some people mad.
• So they begin to criticize you.
• They talk about you in a negative light.
• They try to take away from you.
• They try to make you look bad and make themselves good.

So Eliab the most mature, the most experienced, the one trained for war, the one who should be leading the way – but instead, he's hiding making excuses. Don't let the people closest to you, family, church, neighborhood, friends, peers at work — STOP YOU! Never let the restrictions placed on you by those closest to you stop you from obeying God.

David had to overcome:

1. Inferiority placed on him by others.
2. Restrictions placed on him by those closest to him.
3. The pressure of how others say it should be done.

Then Saul dressed David in his own tunic. He put a coat of armor on him and a bronze helmet on his head. David fastened on his sword over the tunic and tried walking around, because he was not used to them. “I cannot go in these,” he said to Saul, “because I am not used to them.” So he took them off. Then he took his staff in his hand, chose five smooth stones from the stream, put them in the pouch of his shepherd’s bag and, with his sling in his hand, approached the Philistine. - 1 Samuel 17:38-40 (NIV)

David knew what brought him victory before. He knew how God used him. Now there was a great temptation to go away from what he knew.
• Maybe what he knew was not enough?
• Maybe now he needs Saul's armor?

I'm sure Saul’s armor was impressive. It was the best made in all of Israel. I'm sure this armor saved Saul's life before. It makes sense that if David was going to represent Israel, he would do it in the King’s armor, but David couldn't be what somebody else wanted him to be. He had to allow the God he got to know through conquering the lion and the bear to guide him and enable him once again.

Always remember; what you compromise to get, you will ultimately lose.

Stick with what God has taught you in His presence, and what you've proven in battle. In the championship series, you use what got you there. Don't let the pressure of others to tell you how it should be done.

Be faithful.
Stay sweet.
Don't quit.
Don't get weary in well doing.
Resist every temptation to be contained.