I've mentioned some of the things God has been doing in my life since April when He had me start praying the "armor of God" on each morning. I got to thinking about it the other day when I noticed a lot of Christians walking around without their defenses up. Strife, discord, hurt followed in the wake.
Why don't we use the equipment God's given us? Do we just not KNOW? Are we not taught to use all He's supplied for our daily living in Him? I wonder sometimes since so many of us walk around so badly damaged from attacks the enemy has launched our way finding no resistance.
Ephesians 6:10-12 has everything we need to start our day guarded against the attacks. We first find, "Be strong in the LORD and in the strength of HIS might." We tend to start our days running. How much more could we accomplish for Him if we just used HIS strength and might to get through the day? He doesn't wear out, but we certainly tend to by 5 o'clock!
"Put on the full armor of God, that you may be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil." Wow. This armor can withstand what the evil one can lob our way. Why in the world would we NOT use it? What's the definition of crazy?
"For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places." We contend with others around us in the flesh, but we don't battle the REAL enemy! How much of our attitude is "schemes of the devil"? I would be willing to bet more than we realize.
"Therefore, take up the full armor of God, that you may be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything to stand firm." I want to stand firm. I don't want to be swayed by every shifting thought that comes to mind. I want to stay on track with His will in my life at all times. How do I think I can do that without His help? Crazy....
"Stand firm, therefore, having girded your loins with truth..." Truth. What truth? Well, that might seem like a silly question, but have you opened the Word of God today? Do you on a consistent basis? Do you hunger and thirst for more of what He has to impart? Do you hide it in your heart so the "truth" He's given for us is what you've wrapped around you to keep out the lies of the devil?
"...and having put on the breastplate of righteousness..." Guarding our hearts is a breastplate, when we bother to put it on, which can withstand attacks from satan! (I don't like to capitalize his name, too much credit :-))
"and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace..." Re-read my post about peace. Is the peace you're seeking HIS peace to ride out the storms or a peace to get rid of all storms? Which is He wanting you to have?
"in addition to all, taking up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish the flaming missiles of the evil one." Faith is believing without seeing. Our walk with Christ is a walk of faith. Few of us have ever seen Him, but we believe He's there. This piece of equipment is so versitile! It can move around and protect us from any direction the missiles are flung!
"And take the helmet of salvation..." We're supposed to be keeping things out of our minds which might corrupt or poison our thoughts. But do we? With the helmet firmly in place we can be more assured our minds are protected. Every sin we commit is conceived first in the mind.
"...and the Sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God." It comes back to knowing the Word. In and out of season, we have to KNOW the Word of God. With these words God has inspired we can be protected, loved, encouraged, rebuked, enlightened, EQUIPPED for all He's called us to do. But do we READ it? Do we chew on the wording and seek out its original meanings? Do we WANT to learn more from Him, but lack the discipline to make the time in our lives. Ouch.
Why walk around defenseless in this evil world? Why not put on the God-given armor to protect you and stand firm against an enemy who has come "to steal and kill and destroy"? The enemy has no compunction against destroying you. Why not make it impossible through the strength of GOD'S might?
Food for thought. Feel free to pass it on. Thanks to those who have commented and let me know how God's words to me have touched you. It means a lot. :-) I'll have to spell check this later. Gotta get kiddos off to school. :-)
A. M. Wilson