Affirmation Nation

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Why are we always seeking that which is always there?

I have found myself running on the heels of a phantom discouragement, a fleeting emotion that is not really there but that sends chills down my spine none the less. A moment when nothing negative is being said but there are no words being said at all. It is a silent space of wonder that is taken up and filled up by my own thoughts of insecurity. Since when did I forget how to encourage myself? Since when did I get so caught up in my curiosity of what others were thinking that I forgot who Jesus says that I am. What about the gentle whisper in that moment of empty space that tells me how loved and adored I am, just the way I was made?

What about the times when others are getting praise for the very think that I am working like mad to attain? In walks in lousy jealousy.

1 Samuel 18:6-8 – When the victorious Israelite army was returning home after David had killed the Philistine, women from all the towns of Israel came out to meet King Saul. They sang and danced for joy with tambourines and cymbals. 7 This was their song: “Saul has killed his thousands, and David his ten thousands!” 8 This made Saul very angry. “What’s this?” he said. “They credit David with ten thousands and me with only thousands. Next they’ll be making him their king!” 9 So from that time on Saul kept a jealous eye on David.

Saul allowed the praises of David to become the demise of his own confidence. Where does this come from in our own lives and why? Saul was already chosen, yet he allowed one small thing to offend him to the point of no return. Why? It drove him away from who he was called to be. Why? He was already the tallest, the most handsome, the best looking, anointed and obviously blinded to his own worth because of WHY?

Here is the thought that God just smacked me with. There are people in my life (and yours) who think I (we) hung the moon, who compliment me all the time, who love me for who I am. But I choose to listen to the wrong reports because the group of people I desperately want to hear it from seem to be light years away. The last things I heard them say broke my heart into pieces, so why am I holding onto that as if it is still true when the real truth is being spoken to me daily? So what that it goes unnoticed by that other camp? Who cares that they don’t seem to care? What difference is it that they don’t want to see my change, know who I am, what I stand for, and where I have been and where I am going?

Who I could become hinges on this very thing. If God is for me, who can be against me? I’m not optimistic because of the things I see and feel, I am optimistic because of who God is, what He says, and what He has already done. People DO NOT MATTER.

Forgiveness…please reign free…in me

The apology I may never get…doesn’t matter. The affirmation that may never come…it doesn’t matter. It all rides on the wings of hope and trust and the truth that I do hear that I now choose to make my reality. What happened to Saul after this jealous rage? He was tormented from that moment on by a spirit that God allowed. God’s chosen and anointed…now FALLEN. Why? We all seek and starve for genuine friendship…unpolished, unfiltered, white-knuckled-truth-bearing, this-is-what’s-really-happening friendship and relationship and we shy away from it when our ears are no longer being tickled and when the truth comes on the heels of the affirmation we wanted (and got) but we listen the lies in our head over the very thing we sought in the first place.

Wow, Lord. Help me always to rest in YOUR truth, to know who I am, to never take for granted the friendship and love that I have been graced with and that is setting me free from bondage. Thank you, Lord, for the light, for the hope, and for the affirmation that comes straight from heaven.

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The Four…

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Four Choices, Four Results, Four Consequences…which one are you making?

1 Peter 5:8-9a – Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. Stand firm against him, and be strong in your faith.

Last night I sat in the arena of life watching a dramatic event unfold, one that happens everyday if we only had eyes to see the supernatural spiritual warfare of God. It was my desire to step into the arena but God had me watch for purpose. Four souls in this arena stood against the roaring lion and what happened took my breath away. Each one had a decision to make tht would affect the hours and days and years to come. All of them had the same vantage point, for each of them came from the same background, a life of selfishness, addiciton, pride, rebellion, strife, and dissatisfaction that nearly led them all to death, each one previously bound by shame, regret, and guilt for the times before when they had faced this very same lion and failed in their past mistakes. Last night, the decision of one of these four set in motion a chain of events that would call on each of them to stand on the edge of decision surrounding life abundant or death to the spirit. It’s amazing that CHOICE in each moment of decision can define the outcome within only a matter of time. Which one are you?

Deuteronomy 30:15-19 – 15 “Now listen! Today I am giving you a choice between life and death, between prosperity and disaster. 16 For I command you this day to love the Lord your God and to keep his commands, decrees, and regulations by walking in his ways. If you do this, you will live and multiply, and the Lord your God will bless you and the land you are about to enter and occupy. 17 “But if your heart turns away and you refuse to listen, and if you are drawn away to serve and worship other gods, 18 then I warn you now that you will certainly be destroyed. You will not live a long, good life in the land you are crossing the Jordan to occupy. 19 “Today I have given you the choice between life and death, between blessings and curses. Now I call on heaven and earth to witness the choice you make. Oh, that you would choose life, so that you and your descendants might live!

  1. The Sideliner – The one in the arena who everyone assumes is the leader, but the one who thinks more highly of himself than he ought and complains more about circumstances each day instead of actually doing something about it. This is the one who sees the train wreck happening and decides to bow down from it and walk away acting as if it never happened. This person barks orders and makes others around him feel bad and watches from the sideliness while taking credit for the battle on the arena floor. This decision will keep this one a spectator forever, always watching as the one in the arena fights for her life while he chooses excuse and justification for not stepping into battle.
  2. The Courageous – This one was one decision away from calamity and one decision away from possible death as she watched others laugh in the face of opportunity and instead they chose to run toward the direction from which they just came, into the mouth of the waiting lion. As the Courageous watched in anguish, having every reason to pick back up where she had left off, she instead chose life and liberty and spoke against the very thing that was trying to kill her. She grabbed her sword and even though she wasn’t strong enough yet to carry it herself, she handed it to the Brave and watched and learned for her time to do battle would come again.
  3. The Blame Thrower – What a heartbreaking thing to watch for those who dared to see, someone be overtaken by the roaring lion in the arena of life. The saddest part is that the Blame Thrower spewed insult and accusation toward anyone and everyone while laughing in the faces of those trying to help. She forgot momentarily what is was actually like to be in the jaws of the lion as she stepped right into his path…willingly.
  4. The Brave – She was just handed her sword by the Courageous while the Sideliner decided to step out of the arena altogether to complain to anyone who would listen. The Brave…her heart is pounding and her hands shaking as she looks upon her sword which is truth and light and she holds it high and proud, unwilling to move or be shaken. This battle weary princess realizes that this life is no longer about her but that she is called to greater service. As she watches, time and again from her vantage point in the arena, close enough to the lion to hear him breathe, people succomb to their death by CHOICE and her heart breaks and her tears smear her face because she knows this fate all too well. She stands, though, ready to take on the unseen enemy with an air of love and compassion, taking one hit after another but still setting an example for those to follow down this road she is forging. She will NEVER give up because she sees the path from which she just came and there is no turning back now. It doesn’t matter what the Blame Thrower says; it doesn’t matter that the Sideliner doesn’t seem to care. All that matters is that God is preparing her for a hope and a future that she cannot see or fathom, and she will fight to the end!

Four similar pasts, four vantage points, four opportunities to make the best decision, FOUR choices…which one are YOU?

The Pieces…

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Recently, I found myself standing perplexed, hurt, and flat out confused in a situation that had me more than baffled. I have been praying for days for a fresh revelation from the Lord, especially in this regard, and I got it. We always get what we ask for, and sometimes even what we don’t.

When I first came to Christ, my life was already a jumbled mess of a past dying condition of the heart and more questions than answers. It was a bunch of puzzle pieces to an artistic interpretation that wouldn’t dare grace the table of anyone I knew. That alone made me doubt that it could be put back together in a beautiful masterpiece that not only pleased the Lord, but also gave an air of beauty to those around me. No one on earth could tell me how the puzzle could be arranged, but God…as He waited patiently for me to throw out my cherished pieces that I thought were my personal rights and ideas from preconceived notions about life, love, and the pursuit of happiness, God was continuing to grace the pile of pieces with the right ones, and not the wrong ones. What happened then? I stood there and pouted, unwilling to let go of the old that I had rightfully acquired and I fought like mad to hold onto the familiar. How sad. And what a wreck. Who do I really think I am saying, “This is just how God made me and I am going to stay this way and use every excuse in the book to justify this irrational behavior and I am not changing for anyone! It is just the way I am!!” Let’s get real, folks.

While God stood by and watched me, I stood with arms closed and fists clenched while I watched from my own perspective and view from my window on the crazy train. What an example I was setting for others watching…and granted, that trip around the mountain was a total distraction from the puzzle itself and no pieces (right or wrong) moved onto the table. While He was waiting on me, He placed the border on my picture, the easiest part of a puzzle, giving me boundaries, definition, and limits in a godly sense on my new picture, something that was completely foreign to me.

Finally, I was handed my first piece to place into my very own picture, and I ran like mad from one end of the frame to the other trying desperately to shove it in wherever it fit and in all the wrong places and with no help from God. I finally threw my piece on the ground and screamed, “But it doesn’t fit anywhere, God!” My patient God said, “Sure it fits…and I knew where the whole time.” Next, I was allowed my own turn at the pile of pieces and chose the most gorgeous, most beautiful, biggest piece I could find, the one God wasn’t ready for me to have. I had forgotten that there is an order and a larger purpose to the arranging of the pieces. I can’t put bright colored beautiful pieces on foundation that is not strong to hold it. So, what does the foundation of my puzzle look like?

Galatians 5:22-23 – But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, and self-control. 

Ahhh, the fruits of the Spirit, mixed in with that other word…PATIENCE…and of course a bit of rest, and the wrong pieces that are still in that pile that are in my grasp but must be let go of.

Ephesians 4:2 – Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love.

Psalm 27:13-14 – I believe that I shall look upon the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living! Wait for the LORD; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the LORD!

Matthew 11:28-30 – Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.”

My stubbornness in refusing to lay down the seemingly boring foundation ahead of the flashy pieces that are so gorgeous to look at is threatening the entire puzzle that has taken years to build. It is my desire to have foundation balance and THIS is something worth fighting for, incredibly easy to attain, and never can be done in my own strength and will.

Courage

Sweet words from my sweet sister (real sister and sister in Christ 😊). I love you Emily Suzanne!

Willis Party of Five

I have three children and my middle child proves everyday to be my most difficult. She is strong willed and the best word I can come up with to describe her is fierce. She follows her heart and fights for what she believes in, she is strong. Now, these sound like incredible qualities that most people strive for on a daily basis but my daughter is five and for a five year old that doesn’t quite understand how the world works yet these qualities have to be refined. One day she will change the world but today she is learning how to pick her battles.

Last year we tried cheer camp and she went through the week long camp and it came time to do her little performance and she wasn’t having it. She was not going to get out there and show us what she had learned, not for…

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Fully Developed

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Imagine yourself in a dark room with no windows, a deep red light eminating from nowhere yet everywhere, a stillness in the air like you have never before felt. Your eyes adjust to the strange color in this room and you know there is great purpose here, but what? This is the place where the picture of your life gets fully developed.

The first job I ever had at the ripe age of 14 was working for an amazing couple in Ruston, LA after school and during summer at a photography studio. My very intellectual and inquisitive mind took in all of the details surrounding how a beautiful picture is exposed then developed from film onto paper in this elusive, exciting, mysterious dark room. It reminds me of the pictures of our lives. The things we wish for others to see. The reason we get dressed up and stand before a man behind a lens and show off our best features. We have a vision of the future but are not willing to be fully developed to reach it. We get so drawn in by the look of everything, by the feel, by the desire, but we forget that in all good things, there is a process to the promise. How do we so easily forget in our microwave world that things take time?

So many of us want what we want and we want it NOW. We desire to go from Point A to Point B with no suffering, no temptation, no misunderstanding…no patience…but that isn’t real. We desire the dream without the decisions that go with it.

Do we truly understand the Bible when it says:

Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. 3 For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. 4 So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing. (James 1:2-4)

So come on! Don’t you see we need to be FULLY developed! It doesn’t say “if” trials come your way. It says “WHEN”.

What about this:

You can enter God’s Kingdom only through the narrow gate. The highway to hell is broad, and its gate is wide for the many who choose that way. 14 But the gateway to life is very narrow and the road is difficult, and only a few ever find it. (Matthew 7:13-14)

The gateway to LIFE eternal is very narrow and difficult. God never said it would be easy, only that it would be worth it!

In order to be fully developed and to see the beautiful picture we so desperately want to hang on our wall of glory instead of in our pit of shame, we are entrusted to the dark room. Patience is a beautiful virtue and the developing of a picture takes time. Stand there beside the One who took the portrait in the first place and allow Him to tell you when to open the door to show off your masterpiece. Beloved, don’t be afraid of the dark room that is inevitable. See it for what it can be and not for what it is!!

Fear. Is. Not. Of. God

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Psalm 34:4 – I prayed to the Lord, and He answered me. He freed me from all my fears.

Fear imprisons us and makes us forget to have faith in anything.

What a beautiful run this morning as the sun played peek-a-boo over the horizon, the birds began their beautiful chorus to the Creator God to welcome in the dawn, the flowers opened their sleepy buds to watch the sun and the dew on the bright green grass slowly became part of the breathtaking clouds above my head in the clear, blue sky. I had not one care in the world, I was completely overtaken by the magnificent beauty that surrounded me on all sides and I watched nature wake up right before my very eyes.

What a far cry from the people that God asked me to pray for this morning. People completely wracked with fear, broken spirits in perpetual bondage to circumstance, people whose minds have been completely taken over by worry, doubt, and fear. They are stuck in the “I Can’ts”, the “Oh-No’s”, the “What-If”s”. I prayed for people who are so put out by life that they wallow around, not even realizing their fullest potential because they are too busy with their own agenda and would rather sit in front of the tv than enjoying time spent with others. I prayed for Christians so stuck in what’s happening in the world (hurricanes, nuclear threats, crime, and God knows what else) that it all comes out of their mouths instead of the Word of God. Don’t react to the circumstances and the crisis. Fill yourself up with Word so that it comes out when fear rears its ugly head. Why is everyone afraid? Fear is False Evidence Appearing Real. APPEARING real. It isn’t real! It is an EMOTION induced by a perceived threat.

My heartfelt prayer as I wept and ran this morning is that Christians especially will look past the curtain of uncertainty and into the realm of possibility. What you put in, you give away to others. Stop allowing things to pull you away from God’s reality so you go run and hide from His endless possibility. “But Julie…the circumstances…look at them!” No! I won’t! I see them clearly but I KNOW what God says about any and all circumstances and He says to NOT BE AFRAID! Pray!! Get excited that Jesus is coming soon and we get to go home. Pray for those bound so they, too, can join us in the sky with our Savior! Cast your cares on the Lord. Lift up the name of JESUS over everything! Turn off the tv, the internet, the radio and spend that time in the Word of God and watch what happens! Stop looking at the obvious and LOOK UP! Your help comes from the Lord! Pray for the minds of those lost souls that have allowed the enemy free reign and are walking around in darkness and ignorance.

Isaiah 43:1-7 –But now, O Jacob, listen to the Lord who created you. O Israel, the one who formed you says, “Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you. I have called you by name; you are mine. 2 When you go through deep waters, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown. When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you. 3 For I am the Lord, your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior. I gave Egypt as a ransom for your freedom; I gave Ethiopia and Seba in your place. 4 Others were given in exchange for you. I traded their lives for yours because you are precious to me. You are honored, and I love you. 5 “Do not be afraid, for I am with you.     I will gather you and your children from east and west. 6 I will say to the north and south, ‘Bring my sons and daughters back to Israel from the distant corners of the earth. 7 Bring all who claim me as their God, for I have made them for my glory. It was I who created them.’”

Satan is a liar and everyone seems to be believing him over God. The enemy has been defeated and Jesus has conquered death, hell, and the grave. Be encouraged, beloved, because you have authority and dominion over ALL things until the day Christ returns to take us home. You can’t be fearful and believe God at the same time.

Lynda’s Story

In memory of my beautiful sister in Christ who lost her life yesterday helping an elderly couple escape a car they had just wrecked. Lynda, your story lives on, your legacy is great, your heart was full of love and light. I am beyond honored to have known you but also to have been able to bear witness to the transforming power of Christ. You will be missed. Fly high with the angels in heaven!!

Coming Full Circle

This a story of redemption, of grace, of favor, and of HOPE! The picture you see of Lyndais faceless because she represents countless broken women whose faces some choose not to look at out of fear or just plain disgust. Please don’t turn a blind eye to this story. The Lord is raising an army out of the ashes of society. Are you going to just turn away? This is a hard, raw story to read, but God meets us ALL in our moments of pain then surrender! Lynda has HOPE through Christ!!

FullSizeRender (1)My testimony is one of instability, abuse, identity loss and the devil trying in a big way to take me out. I was put into foster care at the age of 4 due to severe mental, physical, sexual, and emotional abuse. Had it gone on much longer, it would have killed me. I don’t remember a whole…

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Part 1: There is no defeat in Christ Jesus. The Victory is in the Unseen!

Beautiful, timeless TRUTH!! Thank you Lord for confirmation!

Savor God, Share Jesus

We all fight battles in this life and some people are victorious and some are not. But every child of God has been blessed with the ability to win life’s battles and you ARE victorious even if you don’t see it or know it yet.

I’m here to share with you the secret that satan does not want you to know. How to win the war and live abundantly in the Victorious life you have been given in Christ. All it takes is faith.

The Bible is filled with promises that God has made for His people. But do we, His people, believe Him? Or better yet, do we believe that His promises are for us, in our lives, in our situations, with our past mess ups and falls? See many times we believe God can, and we believe He will, we just believe it for other people rather than…

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The Right Kind of Food

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I sat at the water’s edge, completely overtaken by the sound of the waves as children played nearby. As I laid my head down to rest, I pondered the stillness in the air ahead of the storm to my north. Wave upon wave lapped at the shore, all coming in at different angles, unsure of which way to go it seemed. The sound of moving water threatened to lull me to sleep. I opened my tired eyes to a sight I had never before seen, more than 30 seagulls at various stages of development, young and old alike, lined up down the beach directly ahead of me, all pointing the same direction…into the wind at the water’s edge, still as statues. I sat up, mesmerized by what I was seeing and the Lord began to speak and I became attentive as I stared at those that were staring toward the wind.

One could easily tell the juvenile chicks from the adults at first glance. These chicks, only weeks before, were testing their wings a bit further down the beach and looked like butterflies floating in the air at their nesting ground. And here they were, learning from the seasoned veterans, the generation before them.

Hebrews 5:12-14 – You have been believers so long now that you ought to be teaching others. Instead, you need someone to teach you again the basic things about God’s word. You are like babies who need milk and cannot eat solid food. 13 For someone who lives on milk is still an infant and doesn’t know how to do what is right. 14 Solid food is for those who are mature, who through training have the skill to recognize the difference between right and wrong.

As they all stood into the wind, I took notice of several of the adults who were brave enough to get their webbed feet wet and step into the gentle waves to seek out something to eat and get a drink of water. However, it became blatantly obvious that what they were taking in was not the right kind of food. It was not good for consumption because one after the other began to spit pieces of trash out of their mouth and some who had actually swallowed the garbage floating on the surface became ill and had to struggle to get it back up and spit it back onto the ground.. One seagull after another took themselves out of the line facing the wind and went for the shiny object that was not good for their well-being before stepping back into line again. I thanked God right then and there for the daily grace we are offered to be able to step back into line when we mess up. He then reminded me that we, as a society of broken humans, are no longer eating the right kind of food. We have stopped drinking the spiritual milk and eating the all-sustaining bread of life and are more focused on the things that float by and grab our attention which pulls us out of Kingdom rank and file.

What is this teaching those behind us in the generation to follow when we are more consumed by our incessant need for approval behind a computer screen or phone? What about those faithful few who continue to stand in line seeking to clean their feathers on the seemingly uncomfortable winds of change and opportunity that comes, sometimes even ahead of a storm, to make us new?

1 Corinthians 10:1-7 – I don’t want you to forget, dear brothers and sisters, about our ancestors in the wilderness long ago. All of them were guided by a cloud that moved ahead of them, and all of them walked through the sea on dry ground. 2 In the cloud and in the sea, all of them were baptized as followers of Moses. 3 All of them ate the same spiritual food, 4 and all of them drank the same spiritual water. For they drank from the spiritual rock that traveled with them, and that rock was Christ. 5 Yet God was not pleased with most of them, and their bodies were scattered in the wilderness. 6 These things happened as a warning to us, so that we would not crave evil things as they did, 7 or worship idols as some of them did. As the Scriptures say, “The people celebrated with feasting and drinking, and they indulged in pagan revelry.”

1 Corinthians 10:12-23 – If you think you are standing strong, be careful not to fall. 13 The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure. 14 So, my dear friends, flee from the worship of idols. 15 You are reasonable people. Decide for yourselves if what I am saying is true.16 When we bless the cup at the Lord’s Table, aren’t we sharing in the blood of Christ? And when we break the bread, aren’t we sharing in the body of Christ? 17 And though we are many, we all eat from one loaf of bread, showing that we are one body. 18 Think about the people of Israel. Weren’t they united by eating the sacrifices at the altar? 19 What am I trying to say? Am I saying that food offered to idols has some significance, or that idols are real gods? 20 No, not at all. I am saying that these sacrifices are offered to demons, not to God. And I don’t want you to participate with demons. 21 You cannot drink from the cup of the Lord and from the cup of demons, too. You cannot eat at the Lord’s Table and at the table of demons, too. 22 What? Do we dare to rouse the Lord’s jealousy? Do you think we are stronger than he is?  23 You say, “I am allowed to do anything”—but not everything is good for you. You say, “I am allowed to do anything”—but not everything is beneficial. 24 Don’t be concerned for your own good but for the good of others.

The question remains…what are YOU eating? What is distracting you from the truth? What is getting YOU out of line? The one thing that moved me the most in this moment of time that seemed to stand still was there was one bird who I watched pick up a piece of garbage and ingest it, what looked like cellophane, and this bird did not get sick and did not step back in line. Why? Because he was accustomed and conditioned to eating TRASH and it no longer affected him. How sad, to die and never know truth and love and heaven because of the condition of your heart which has been fed the wrong kind of food…by YOU.

Every Piece….

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Ephesians 6:10-20 –  Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. 14 Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; 16 above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. 17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; 18 praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints— 19 and for me, that utterance may be given to me, that I may open my mouth boldly to make known the mystery of the gospel, 20 for which I am an ambassador in chains; that in it I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.

I used to think that the armor of God was my DEFENSE againt the enemy in the battle of spiritual warfare, where bodies lie scattered and wounded soldiers for God walk shell-shocked and confused amongst the chaos of the combat. We are all attacked daily. Sometimes others fake attacks in order to justify their irrational behavior….let that sink in.

Let’s look at our defensive weapons if you will:

  1. THE BELT OF TRUTH combats the lies we love to not only listen to, but tell ourselves. We cannot attain victory until we start speaking life into EVERY situation.
  2. THE BREASTPLAT OF RIGHTEOUSNESS guards our trembling hearts from the onslaught and fiery darts that come seemingly from nowhere, yet everywhere. Everything flows from the heart and the enemy knows that.
  3. FEET FITTED WITH THE READINESS THAT COMES FROM THE GOSPEL OF PEACE. Are you ready? Are you really ready to wlk out in obedience what God is calling you to do? Are you at peace? What is holding you back? Is it because you can’t hear God speaking anymore? If so, it’s because you have quieted His still, small voice by not listening. Find peace by doing that last thing you heard Him say and WALK IT OUT. Do not run away from the call.
  4. SHIELD OF FAITH. Another defensive weapon against the things that come against us, ususally the arrows of disbelief when we wonder if God is really big enough to handle our situation. Believe in the things you cannot see. That is true faith.
  5. HELMET OF SALVATION. How many thoughts a day do we actually take captive and give back to the Lord? How many thoughts roam our minds and take up camp where they don’t belong and light fires of insecurity, doubt, and worry?

So many people stop here…But there is ONE MORE piece of the armor, but not a defensive one.

#6 – THE SWORD OF THE SPIRIT is the only OFFENSIVE piece to our armor. Yes, I said offensive. If you, or anyone else for that matter, is offended by the Word of God, the GOOD! It means that it is convicting the parts of us that we want to keep hidden, our secret sins. Our offensive sword is not a part of SELF, but absolutely of GOD. It’s the truth of God in itself. God’s word breathes life, it inspires, it is alive, it is dynamic, and it is LIFE CHANGING.

Hebrews 4:12 – For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

God’s word reveals who we are…and who we are not. It penetrates our moral and spiritual lives by separating what is good and evil within us. It requires decisions. As God’s word divides your soul (your mind, will, and emotions), allow it to do it’s work! STAND FIRM then with your FULL armor and speak life with your sword. When you are holding your shield with one hand and your sword with another, there is no way you an pick up anything else. And remember that there is no armor for your back. God goes before you and if you CHOOSE to turn around and not obey, you are left vulnerable to the onslaught.

Please…be comforted by the fact that God is for you, my friend. Even when the battles ensue all around you, the seeds of comfort take root in soils of adversity. His word is a lamp unto your feet and a light unto your path. We may not can see clearly the path before us, but trust and know that it is there.

James 1:15 – Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death.

Isaiah 40:6-8 – The voice said, “Cry out!” And he said, “What shall I cry?” “All flesh is grass, And all its loveliness is like the flower of the field. 7 The grass withers, the flower fades, Because the breath of the Lord blows upon it; Surely the people are grass. 8 The grass withers, the flower fades, But the word of our God stands forever.”

We are not immune to trials and suffering, but our faith should not be hindered by our unwillingness. God’s word is eternal and unfailing and it never returns void. So…choose today & FIGHT.