Sunday, February 3, 2013

The Armor of God: Don't Leave Home Without It!

Several years ago, I went after-season shopping and found my husband this nifty yellow polo shirt drastically reduced and at a great price.  It wasn't lemon yellow, just that soft pale color that stands out amongst a sea of blue, black, brown and grey - the typical colors of a police officer's wardrobe.

Bringing it home and proudly displaying it, I could tell my man was none too pleased, but to satisfy my desire, he put it on and wore without protest to our church service.

Not long after the music started, he received a call of a hostage situation and immediately left.  As I drove home with our three children, In horror, I remembered the yellow shirt.  My man would be a sitting target in a wave of blue!  He'd have "pick me" written all over his person, all because I'd chosen to outfit him in a bright color.  Ugh.

Thankfully, the situation ended peacefully and my man was able to come home in tact.  The shirt, however, was quickly put in the "give-a-way" pile, never to be worn in this police household again.

Sometimes, we are like my husband.  We stand out to the enemy because we are unarmed, or unarmored.

Ephesians 6:10-18 says....

10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. 13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.

First, we are to find our strength in God and in His  power.  Our strength only goes so far.  If you think back to my last blog, there often comes a time when we are like the old camel in the Last Straw Game.  One more straw or burden, and the poor old camel's back breaks in two.  The good news is, God's strength never runs out.  So power up!  He is your Sustainer. 

Second, we should go through a mental checklist and ask Him to protect our minds from impure, unlovely, or displeasing thoughts; to protect our mouths from words that wound, or are ungodly; to guard our heart - the seat of our emotions, so that we can respond in truth and love; to protect us from anger, pride, unforgiveness, discouragement, fear, etc.

We should ask Him to help us buckle the belt of truth on so that we stay centered on God's Word; to strap on the breastplate of righteousness and walk with moral integrity; to put on the sandals of peace so that our minds and hearts can be at rest in Him, but also seek to be the peacemaker that He calls us to be; to arm us with the shield of faith, the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit so that we can fight off the enemy's advances and rely on the truth of who He is.

Finally, we should stand firm and never falter in our faith.  God will fight our battles for us, but we must be a willing and armed soldier for Him.

With that said, how are you armored today?  Are you like my poor husband in that yellow shirt, or are you suited and ready for battle?  The armor of God...don't leave home without it!

Blessings,
Kristi

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