Somehow, and I’m not sure how, but InStyle magazine has started arriving at my house as though I subscribed to it. I will be the first to acknowledge my lack of fashion sense. If I can put it on and wear it, that’s good enough for me. Clearly InStyle is lost on me. I’m a lot pickier about the spiritual clothing I wear though. It needs to fit like armor. With the understanding that I certainly don’t have it mastered, I can share from my heart what dressing for success means to me.
Wear armor; it comes in many styles and weights. Armor is protection. In the physical sense it’s made out of materials that are impenetrable to outside forces that damage, mutilate, and take life from a body. In the spiritual sense armor accomplishes the same thing, except spiritual armor protects – well our spirit, our emotions, our feelings and things that can’t be seen, but are very real. Read scripture from Ephesians 6, copied at the end of this blog, and see how the Bible best describes our need for spiritual armor.
I think of armor as a wraparound protection from the enemy of my soul. Sometimes a short cloak of protection is all I need because on that occasion I’m not so vulnerable and prone to negative influences. Other times, I need the full suit of armor from the solid metal around my head to the steel-toed boots. And even then I pray that there is no can opener in sight. Why is that? It’s human nature. We are all emotional beings, caught in waves that crest one moment only to crash the next. Feelings are not a good barometer for life, although they are one way to gauge our need of armor for the day ahead. Do we need the full suit today, or will the lightweight be enough?
Here’s how to dress for the occasion and be protected from enemy attack. It’s a battlefield out there. Here’s what we need to enter into our day. Remember we are not struggling against flesh and blood; we struggle with things we can’t see.
The belt of truth: the enemy of our soul will feed us lies all day long. Don’t believe them!
The breastplate of righteousness: This is NOT self-righteousness. This is our inward desire to believe God and live out our faith for him.
The shield of faith: our absolute defense against the evil one. Faith in God, our defender, our shield.
The helmet of salvation: Turn our thoughts over to the things we’ve been told to think on. Remember Philippians 4:8 whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable, excellent or praiseworthy, think about such things.
The sword of the spirit: Simply the Bible. I have the Bible on my phone. It is with me always.
The feet that seek peace: The more we pray, read our Bibles, and seek God, the more peace we have. Peace and animosity cannot co-exist. Seek peace.
Hand over that can opener and nobody gets hurt. Have you prayed? Have you committed this day to God? I’m suiting up. How about you?
Ephesians 6: 10-18 (NIV) 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 the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. 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.