As we move into a new year, I can promise you that we will face challenges and we will have reasons to celebrate. Either challenge or celebration can be a temptation to fail or an opportunity for victory. We choose.
God provides us with everything we need for victory. Consider the “Armor of God” in Ephesians 6:10-18. First, we buckle on the belt of truth, around our waist. Instead of focusing on the lies of the world, we surround ourselves with God’s truth.
The second protective layer covers our heart with the breast plate of righteousness. We have no righteousness of our own. We all fall short. We are right with God only because of Jesus.
The gospel of peace protects our feet and helps us move faster across the prickly earth. We can walk, run, climb, and even skip with the good news of Jesus’ peace. The gospel of peace is a perfect fit for our feet as we stand in Jesus’ love celebrating His victory.
Action is required for the fourth protective layer as we hold up our shield of faith soaked with living water. If we lower the shield the fiery darts of the enemy, coming at us in all sizes and shapes, will weaken our resolve. Our faith that the shield will protect us emboldens us to raise the shield and fight longer. Jesus said in John 7:38, “Whoever believes in me…rivers of living water will flow from within them.” May your shield drip (flow) with Jesus’ living water.
The final layer goes on our head, the helmet of salvation. Back in the Roman soldiers’ day, the sturdy helmets were made of thick leather covered with metal. The helmet protected the head from heavy double-sided swords.
In today’s world, the whispers we hear in our head from the enemy could be double-sided lies. The truth of salvation through Christ sets us free (John 8:31-32). Our transformed attitude becomes like Christ and allows us to identify the truth from the lies (Romans 12:2). It is transformation and protection all in one piece of armor.
The last item in the armor is a vital weapon, the Sword of the Spirit, the Word of God. It provides the protection we need to advance into enemy territory. Power and victory require God’s Word stored in our memory banks. Jesus used this effective weapon against his enemies. In his weakened state after 40 days of fasting in the desert, he fought the enemy three times with this weapon and walked away victorious.
“The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.” 2 Corinthians 10:4 The military use 10 4 to as a radio signal to communicate they are OK, the message has been received, they are ready for the battle.
Are you armed and ready for a 2021 victory?