Put on that armor! Part 1

Father God, good morning! I am feeling much better. Andrew and I got hit with the stomach flu Tuesday and we were out of it for a few days. We have rebukin' the pukin' over here! The neatest thing was that Brian was initiated into the "Mommy Club." Because I was sick Tuesday night, he had to get up (several times) when Andrew got sick in the middle of the night. Bunk beds are great until the person in the top bunk leans over to be sick! It was a mess! Poor Brian had to strip Andrew and Aaron's bed (bottom bunk), clean mattresses...... He was so grossed out because vomit actually touched him! My only thought was, "well, you are not an official member unless you have it in your hair........." Anyway, we are all doing much better, praise God!

But, what I want to share with you most today was the spiritual warfare I experienced Tuesday. Because I am preparing to speak next week (please keep me in your prayers!), I know that I will be under attack. I have learned to be alert and watchful during these times. "Be self-controlled and alert- your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings. And the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will Himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. To Him be the power forever and ever. Amen."-1Peter 5:8-10. And, after I wrote the piece about Oprah, I had several people tell me to continue to pray for protection, as the enemy doesn't like us to mess with his turf. So, as I lay feverish in bed late Tuesday afternoon, my eyes bolted awake and I felt the intense need to pray, claiming every verse of God's protection over me and my family. I was reminded to put on my armor!

Ephesians 6:10-18 "Finally, be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power. Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes. 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. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when (not IF!) the day of evil comes, you may stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then with:
The Belt of Truth:
This is the most important piece of armor and is what we put on FIRST. There is a reason why it is first. We need God's Truth- NOT the truth of the world, or our own reasoning. We need His Truth as Light to direct our steps, as a light for our path. There is no way to discern what are lies unless you first know the Truth.

When I ponder this verse, what God reminded me was that Jesus is the Truth. Jesus said, "I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life." (John 14:6). So, we put on JESUS when we put on Truth. God brought to my mind the picture of a body builder. When I worked out in a gym, there were guys who were serious about bodybuilding and lifting weights. They wore a very thick, wide leather belt around their waist. This belt was important to them, as it helped support them, giving them the stability they needed to put the extra pressure of heavy weights on their body. These guys would NOT have lifted unless they were wearing their belts! It made me think that, we too, need to buckle Jesus securely around us before we attempt to lift any weights of the world. We need the Truth in order for us to be firm and secure.

The Breastplate of Righteousness: What does the breastplate cover? My heart! The Bible says, "Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life." So, I want my heart guarded, protected. But, how? I put on the breastplate of righteousness. Where does "rigteousness" come from? It only comes through the atoning sacrifice, the blood of Jesus Christ. So, I put Jesus over my heart. I pray, "Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me." I remember Phillipians 4:23 that says not to be anxious for anything, but to pray about everything, then the peace that passes all understanding will GUARD my HEART and MIND in Christ Jesus.

My feet fitted with the readiness (to be fully prepared) that comes from the Gospel of peace. The "peace" with God only comes through Jesus. So, we are to put Jesus on our feet and take Him wherever we go. We need to be ready and fully prepared to spread the sweet aroma of Christ everwhere we go, with everyone we meet. We need to witness to the world "the peace that passes all understanding," a peace that only comes from who we are in Him!

Shield of faith: Faith in what? Faith in who? In Jesus! Believing that God IS who He says He is, that He can do what He says He can do, that I am who He says I am, that I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me, and that God's Word is alive and active in me (Beth Moore, "Believing God.") How many times did Jesus talk about faith? "If you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you can move mountains...your faith has healed you.....your faith has saved you." Christians, we have got to start raising our shield of faith!!!!! Why? "...you can extinguish ALL the flaming arrows of the evil one." Did you hear that? ALL the arrows- all the schemes, all the plans, all the attempts to come against us. And, we EXTINGUISH, not deflect, but put out those fires! Have you ever seen movies like "Braveheart"? Get that mental picture! Shields were not wimpy circles of tin, but large, strong barriers that kept the enemy's arrows from doing any harm. The soldiers would huddle together, lift their shields as one, to form one unbreakable barrier. Also, shields would allow soldiers to run INTO battle (not away from it), shields up and wage war.

Helmet of salvation: Again, salvation comes through Jesus Christ! So, we put Jesus over our minds, protecting them. The Word says to "take every thought captive into obedience in Jesus Christ." When those negative thoughts come, when the enemy comes in with lies, take those thoughts captive immediately! Renounce the thoughts and REPLACE them with the Truth.

Sword of the Spirit which is the Word of God: Go into battle with His Word! Wield the sword! Tomorrow I will be talking more about this.


Father, thank you for the armor! Thank you that you give me protection from the enemy. Help me to pray the armor everyday. Thank you for Jesus and His precious blood which makes up every piece of the armor. In the precious Name of Jesus we pray. Amen.

Here is a link to another of my blogs about Jesus being my rock and protection:
http://tracyberta.blogspot.com/2007/11/he-is-my-rock.html

Here is a link to friend from "Unequally yoked Marriage" who recently wrote a great post on the armor- check it out!
http://unequalmarriage.typepad.com/my_weblog/2008/02/the-battle-we-c.html

3 thoughts shared....:

Cahleen 何凱琳 said...

I will definitely keep you in my prayers. Thanks for the encouraging post!

Tracy Berta-daughter to the King, wife, mother, speaker, writer said...

Cahleen,
Thank you so much- how I cherish your prayers!

Blessings, friend!

christschild said...

I love this post too! My kids have a video..I think it's one of the Bible Hero Videos. It talks about putting on the full armor of God. It is so true! It is a constant battle everyday. The closer we get to God...the more satan wants to distract us with thoughts and such. I will pray for you...please pray for me too. Some days satan bothers me more than others...mostly on the days when I'm trying to do my bible study and stay close to God. When I feel distracted...it is true, you have to start thinking about God and how He is with you and He will never leave you, nor forsake you. What an amazing Father we have! Thank you for this encouragement.
Have a wonderfully blessed day,
Elizabeth