Gilas Pilipinas reintroduced Philippine basketball in the world stage last year behind diminutive guards like Jimmy Alapag, Jayson Castro and LA Tenorio.
Alapag, who stands at 5-7, is probably the shortest player in the Fiba World Cup last year. But what he lacked in height, he made up with his leadership, ‘puso’ and the ability to knock down big shots during crunch time.
The one-time PBA MVP actually banged in 18 points and issued four assists during Gilas’ 81-79 overtime win over Senegal, marking the Philippines’ first win in the world stage since the 1974 edition, held in San Juan, Puerto Rico.
Alapag is just one of the many vertically-challenged basketball players in the country, who has proven time and again that height isn’t necessarily might.
Today, the PBA is teeming with ‘giants’ due to the presence of Barangay Ginebra’s 6-foot-11 or (is it 7-foot) Greg Slaughter and Japeth Aguilar, San Miguel Beer’s June Mar Fajardo, NLEX’s 6-foot-8 Asi Taulava, among others.
But Alapag, along with many other under-six-feet guards, are making their own mark in the PBA.
More importantly, height-challenged Filipino players overcame the giant of doubt, giant of fear, giant of failure and giant of despair.
You see, height-challenged players today in the PBA didn’t get their million-buck deals on a silver platter.
Each day, they had to make a decision to face their giants and overcome.
In life, we do have our own giants, giants that stare down at us.
Giants that will always try to intimidate us. Giants that will try to pound us into submission as they roar through our thoughts and imaginations.
Israel’s David, then a shepherd boy, literally faced his own giant named Goliath.
No one in Israel’s army had the guts to trade swords with the Philistine champion for the last 40 days.
But as the Israelite soldiers and even King Saul looked at all the giant’s advantages, David chose to look at the advantage of having God on his side.
And win, David did. With a sling and one smooth stone, Goliath’s piece of exposed flesh (his forehead) became David’s bull’s eye.
The giant went down with a loud thud. Israel went on to win that battle against the Philistines, but more importantly, David’s decision to face the giant created an impact that to this day continues.
What’s your giant today? Is it pestering your day, your week, your month or maybe for your whole life? Maybe it’s time to face your giant, not with your strength, but with God’s.