Tuesday, August 1, 2017
Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm. Stand your ground, putting on the belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared. In addition to all of these, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil. Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere.
After showing us the armor and weapons of the Christian, Paul lays-out how to stand our ground for Christ – praying in the spirit, always, and for all believers…everywhere.
That is a tall order!
It may not be a tall order for you; I’ve found Christianity is not a one-size-fits-all coat. Christianity is most certainly a come-all-to Christ blanket, but some things, like the kind of prayer-life Paul described are tougher for some people than others. It’s not that prayer itself is that complicated; it is a conversation with God, who loves and saves you. But, for me, just remembering all the people to pray for, and what their needs are, and who’s going in for surgery when, and the names of their families, and what hospital, and, and, and…. Well, it can be a bit overwhelming.
And then I remember…covering all the bases, doing everything, getting it all done…is not my circus. Putting on the armor, praying in the Spirit (of Christ…that is with humility towards God), and staying alert and persistent in prayer…that is my job!
If seeing to the needs of every believer, naming them all, their needs, their relatives and cousins by the dozens – even just the ones I know – well, if it’s up to me to be responsible for all that, I’d fail so miserably even my grandmother would fire me!
And Jesus, Himself would rebuke me for trying to be everything to everybody, and failing to trust in Him. He never planned it that way; He planned for us to trust each other and be ready to serve each other with the strength God gives each day. He doesn’t expect us to do what we can’t. That is what He will do; it’s called walking by faith.
Praying always is a neat way of saying walk by faith; it has to do with living in awareness of your dependency on Christ for everything, and being sensitive to the needs of others with whom you come in contact every day, so that, as Christ gives you the strength and prompts you in your spirit, you will respond to Jesus by reaching out to those around you.
A thought that is good to keep on the front burner:
God’s army is to be fully prepared for the battle. A soldier who is fully-clad in the armor, weapon in one hand, battle plan in the other hand, and never joins the fight is someone who is all dressed up and has nowhere to go.