Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Let's Wear the Armor!

I don’t know about you, but I do believe that there is such a thing as spiritual warfare. I believe that’s exactly what Paul is talking about when he says:

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. Ephesians 6: 12
Peter talks about it too,

Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. 1 Peter 5: 8

Boy, and did these two men know about spiritual battles, or what? Paul, the persecutor of Christians…Peter, the denier of Christ…by the power of the Holy Spirit, they both had to endure fierce battles and remain constantly alert as they stayed permanently fitted in their God-provided armors. I’m certain the enemy kept on attacking them until the day they finally joined the heavenly court.

Peter and Paul would not be talking about this or giving such advice if the war weren’t real. And the thing is that it is as real today as it was back then. We are attacked too…constantly, whether we are aware of it or not.

Do you know how I know when I’m being attacked by the enemy? I know the moment I realize I’m worrying about something that is already completely resolved. It sounds crazy, but that kind of stuff happens to me. I, sometimes, catch myself worrying about something I totally KNOW I should not even consider as a potential source of remote concern. I worry about things that are settled.

It’s exhausting…

It robs me of my peace…and that’s the main sign of the attack: when peace vanishes.

The enemy knows that I’m an anxiety-prone person and that when I’m nervous and worried I become short-tempered, impatient and angry; therefore, I lose self-control and I often sin…all these causing me to withdraw from God’s presence, which is the enemy’s ultimate goal. He also knows that peace is the antidote that breaks this vicious chain. Then, he makes sure that he plants the seed of worry in my heart even when there’s nothing to worry about, so I lose my peace and the chain of despair that enslaves me is securely welded back into place around my neck.

What is there to do? Well, pray! We need to remain in constant communication with the Lord, asking Him to help us keep on His Armor (Ephesians 6: 10-20) so when the attacks come we are ready and we can stand our ground. We need to be aware that the attacks will come, so we can recognize them as we see them coming to then cover ourselves with the shield of faith and fight them off with the sword that is the Word! Hang on to your faith and go to the Word!

A while ago I tried it for the first time, and it worked! I know…why should I be surprised, right? But I was. In my years reading about the Word as the sword of the spirit, I never wielded it until very recently. As I was deep in the waters of fear and worry, waiting for test results to come back, the Holy Spirit moved me toward my Bible. I opened it in the Psalms and began to read them all, one by one, until a sense of peace came over me, so much so that I was able to doze off on and off while reading…which could never had happened in the state of panic and stress I was. Ever since then, every time I feel the fright of irrational worry creep over my spine, I remember the Psalms and I go to the Word…and like a mighty warrior, I lift it ready to deflect and pierce.

I don’t know about you, but I do believe that there is such a thing as spiritual warfare. And I believe the way to fight it is to recognize it, to be alert and to use the weapons God has provided. Discover the weapons in the armory, and put on the armor of God every day. He will show you how to use it. He will show you the way.

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