“Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord… Put on the whole armour of God… For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood… Therefore take up the whole armour of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.”
Ephesians 6:10-13 (NKJV)
If you want to be able to stand no matter what evil comes your way, then you need to realize that there is a spiritual battle going on. You can’t fight a spiritual battle with carnality, and so you’ll need to use the spiritual armour and weapons that the Lord has made available to you. And you’ll only experience success if you use “the whole armour of God.” It’s His armour and you need to make use of all of it.
Overall, these verses are stressing the importance of relying in God for our success – we cannot overcome and live in victory without Him. It starts with “being strong in the Lord” – not in ourselves. And then every piece of armour reveals how we need Him and His power in our lives. The helmet of salvation (we’re saved by His grace), the breastplate of (His) righteousness (not our own), the shoes of the Gospel of (His) peace, the belt of (His) truth, the shield of faith (or dependency and trust in Him), and the sword of the Spirit (which is God’s Word).
“Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me.”
John 15:4 (NKJV)
True success and real fruit in this life starts in Christ and flows out of a friendship with Him. The last piece of armour that we’re given is prayer:
“Therefore take up the whole armour of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand… praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints.”
Ephesians 6:13, 18 (NKJV)
There are different types of prayer, but essentially prayer is simply talking to God. Christianity is a relationship with God, and any good relationship has good communication. Likewise, it will be impossible to live in victory and reign in life without communication with our Heavenly Father, Saviour and Lord. Just like all the other pieces of armour, prayer reveals a dependency upon God – which is vital.
Usually when things go wrong for people and their backs are against the wall, they start praying like never before! People often turn to God when they feel they need Him, and then forget about Him when things are going well and they don’t feel that they need any help from God. And yet God is our source and supply. We cannot live without Him and His grace in our lives. Your strength, wisdom and talent will only get you so far. If you trust in yourself, eventually you’ll get tired and fall apart or burn out. When you do fall apart you can turn to God and He will lovingly help you, but if you walk with God every step of the way you won’t end up burnt out, and you’ll enjoy the journey more. We need to depend on God all the time, not only when things are difficult.
Through prayer we can ask God for wisdom or things, we can praise Him and thank Him, and we can get direction and insight into situations. Prayer helps you to realize the connection you have with God and as you focus on that, it helps to open up your heart and receive from Him. Prayer helps to sensitize your heart towards God. Good relationships have two-way communication – if you give God the opportunity to speak to your heart, He will. Prayer is talking to God and Him talking to you, in your heart.
Thought to focus on for the day:
Your strength, wisdom and talent will only get you so far. If you trust in yourself, eventually you’ll get tired and fall apart or burn out. When we depend on Jesus as our source of strength, wisdom and everything, we will start reigning in life and living in victory.
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