When Saul disobeyed God, Samuel was sent to the house of Jesse to anoint a new king. Samuel saw the older sons of Jesse and thought that God would choose one of these handsome strong men to lead his people. But God did not choose them and told Samuel “…the Lord does not see as man sees; for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” Finally David was brought before Samuel and anointed though he was the youngest of the sons of Jesse. Though Samuel expected one of the older brothers to be anointed, David proved to be braver and more faithful than them.
Later, when David, still a young boy, offered to fight Goliath, his brothers rebuked him and told him to return to shepherding. Undeterred, he went to King Saul who tried to discourage him saying that he was a youth and Goliath had been fighting since he was a youth. King Saul underestimated the faith of David and the ability of God to deliver Israel by the hands of a young person. Finally, Goliath despised David and felt insulted that King Saul would send a kid to fight a man.
The only ones who did not underestimate David were God and David. David didn’t trust in his own strength but knew that God had delivered him from perils in the past and that God would glorify His name through David. God knew that David would trust Him. Many Psalms expound on David’s trust in God for deliverance.
The Underestimated Christian
Like David, we may find that people whose opinions we value may have little faith in us. Maybe we haven’t proved ourselves yet. Worse, maybe we have failed in opportunities when we could have proven ourselves. If we have proved ourselves untrustworthy because we haven’t kept promises or have been irresponsible, we will have to keep promises and act responsibly to restore faith in others that they can depend on us.
However, sometimes we have not had an opportunity to prove ourselves. We must trust in God and, despite what others say, trust in ourselves. I know a fine young lady who was told by her parents that she was not “college material” and would likely not even finish high school. Instead of giving up, she trusted God, listened to people who had faith in her, and ultimately trusted in herself. She did get her high school diploma. Not only is she attending college but she has received honors for her high grades and has proved that she is very much “college material.” Eventually she will be a teacher inspiring others to achieve great things. Some people underestimated her but she had faith in God and herself and has accomplished great things.
Don’t let anyone discourage you from any good thing! Some people want to hold you back because they’ve been hurt or their dreams were shattered and they want to save you from the pain they felt. Some people are just negative and will criticize any plan. Some people are jealous and don’t want you to achieve something great for fear of how it will make them feel. Some people just don’t realize that they are being a discouragement.
How can you overcome the heaviness of someone underestimating you?
- Pray to God for strength and trust in Him.
- Find people who will believe in you. They are there, I promise, but you may have to seek long for them.
- Trust in yourself and discipline yourself to pursue your dream with endurance and zeal (Ecclesiastes 9:10).
Do you see a man who excels in his work? He will stand before kings; He will not stand before unknown men. Proverbs 22:29