The Shepherd and the Soldier

By M. M. Moore

The story of David, a faithful young lad
Will help us rejoice and all feel glad.
Our story begins with a priest named Samuel,
A man who listened to G-d.
“Go talk to a man named Jesse,” G-d said,
So Samuel went off with his rod.

“Find me a king among his eight sons.
Be quick now and let’s get this done.
I want a new leader who’ll walk close to me.
There’s one that I will appoint.”
So seven sons came before Samuel that day,
But none did Samuel appoint.

“Is this all the sons you have?” Samuel asked.
“There must be one more to finish my task.”
“Another is out in the field with the sheep.”
So they sent for Jesse’s young boy.
The Lord said to Samuel, “now this is the one,
Go forward and anoint him with oil.”

Young David had spent many nights with the sheep
Defending their lives without too much sleep.
The Lord knew that David had become very brave,
Compassionate, wise, and true.
“He’ll honor my Name without any shame
And follow my leading through.”

But trouble was brewing in David’s homeland.
The Philistines came with many demands.
“Surrender your land or we’ll kill everyone
And take all your cattle too.”
Israel trembled and went to the king
But he didn’t know quite what to do.

Israel was proud and always compliant
To fight with anyone, except with a giant.
He was so strong and armed with huge weapons.
He stood over nine feet tall.
Even the tallest of Israel’s men
To Goliath would look very small.

Each morning at dawn they’d stand face to face.
The giant would step out and yell his disgrace.
But one day when David had come with supplies
He asked what was going on.
“Who is this bellowing Philistine
That he should defy our G-d?”

At first they all laughed, but then told the king
That David would fight with only a sling.
Saul thought it foolhardy but sent for the lad
To set young David straight.
“He’s seasoned in war and eager for blood,
You’ll only make him irate.”

But David explained to his well honored king
That fighting with giants was not a new thing.
“Lions and bears would come on my flock,
And me, not owning a sword,
I learned how to wrestle and fight with those beasts
But more than that, trust in the Lord.”

Saul was convinced and giving his blessing
Gave David his shield and started him dressing.
A helmet, a sword, and a big coat of armor,
So heavy they made David groan,
We’re traded at last for his own woven clothes,
His staff and some well-chosen stones.

The army stood speechless with fear on their face
As David walked forward and prayed for G-d’s grace.
He thought of his friends, his mother, his bed,
As he made his way down to the place
Where Goliath seemed monstrous and sweaty and mad
As they stood there face to face.

“You think I’m a dog?” the mighty man screamed.
And David looked helpless or so it seemed.
“I’ll give your flesh to the birds of the air
And take your staff and your stones.
Your G-d is a joke, he must be asleep,
I’ll let him bury your bones.”

This made David angry that Goliath would say
Such terrible things to his G-d that way.
So David screamed back at the top of his lungs,
“You come to me with weapons in hand,
But I come to you in the name of the Lord
And by his power I stand.”

The giant was furious and stomped on the ground.
He threw down his shield with and ear-splitting sound.
David stood like a rock and used the time wisely
To pick out his very best stone.
He knew that the day would belong to the Lord
As soon as his nugget was thrown.

The Philistine charged to tear David apart
As the Israelites watched with a fainting heart.
But David had learned his craft very well.
His arm was steady and true.
He sent the rock flying with a powerful force,
And prayed once again as it flew.

The sun seemed to stop in its path through the sky
As and angel filled heaven looked down from on high
To watch David fight with his life on the line
Defending the name of the Lord,
Waiting as victory hung in the balance
Before the Philistine hoard.

The shepherd and soldier were twelve feet apart
When David’s small weapon fell square on its mark.
The Philistine roared as the rock hit is head
And brought him down hard to his knees.
He stood to his feet for a second attack
But fell face down in defeat.

“Give glory to G-d!” all Israel shouted,
And wondered how they could ever have doubted.
They chased the Philistines back to their town
Until it was almost eve.
Returning, they sang great song to the Lord
For again they learned to believe.

We all have our giants, within and without.
They seem so enormous and tempt us to doubt.
But small as our weapons oft seem to be
With impossible odds before us,
It is through our G-d, the Kings of all kings
That we shall stand victorious.

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