Years ago a very wise woman taught me two things that completely changed my life. The first was how to give sacrificially and the second was how to pray the armor of God. Rarely a week goes by I don’t think of her and repeat her words over my heart. I can’t imagine what my life would look like if she had not taught me these two important lessons. Every morning, this godly woman prays Ephesians 6:10-19, the armor of God, over her life before her feet hit the floor. I am not as faithful as her to pray it every single morning, but I am learning just how crucial this armor is.
Sometimes, I have a hard time knowing when something is spiritual attack and when I’m just dealing with the consequences of my disobedience. When that happens, I stop and ask the Holy Spirit to show me if and where I’ve been disobedient (Fair warning, He will always answer that request so be ready.) Then, I begin comparing what I’m hearing with the truth of God’s Word because I know the enemy is speaking lies to me and once I see the truth of God’s Word I can recognize the lies for what they are. This isn’t easy for me because the enemy’s lies are really, really deceptive. He plays on all my insecurities, my guilt, my past, my screw-ups. He loves to parade those in front of me waiting for me to throw in the towel and choose to not be who God has made me to be and choose to not obey what He’s told me to do.
Today, the enemy has been roaring in my ears. Matt and I have an opportunity to teach a lesson on financial health to a group of couples starting off their marriages, and last night Matt was approached about teaching a similar type lesson to some other groups. Not two hours later, I am leaving the park where we had met our small group and we discover I have a flat tire. Matt and the small group guys get the spare on only to find out that the spare is flat. Awesome. Our friend Matt May uses a little air pump to get enough air in it so Matt can drive it to the nearest gas station, and this morning he took it to the tire place so they could fix the leak. Only, it isn’t fixable and we need a new tire. Actually, we need two new tires. And honestly, while it’s a bummer to have to spend several hundred dollars on a couple of new tires to replace two that weren’t even that old, my discouragement came because it’s just another thing to hit our emergency fund in a month that has not been friendly to our emergency fund. An unexpected vet bill, dental work that needs to happen, a fence that desperately needs some work, all of that stuff on its own is just stuff. It’s what happens. It’s called life, and everyone goes through it.
But then the lies started coming. I was sitting in the parent waiting room during Lydi’s ballet class and thoughts started swirling, “Who are you to teach on finances when you can’t even finish your emergency fund without something happening? . . . There are so many people who are doing a lot better with their finances than you. You should let them teach that lesson. . . . You’re a failure, and as soon as you open your mouth everyone else will know it too.”
Thankfully, I recognized the lies almost immediately for what they were, but it is still so hard not to believe them. My gracious Lord knew I was going to face this today and He had already shown me the truth in His Word earlier this morning. During my priority time a few hours before, I read 1 Corinthians 1:4-8…
I always thank my God for you because of the grace God has given you in Christ Jesus. I thank God because in Christ you have been made rich in every way, in all your speaking and in all your knowledge. Just as our witness about Christ has been guaranteed to you, so you have every gift from God while you wait for our Lord Jesus Christ to come again. Jesus will keep you strong until the end so that there will be no wrong in you on the day our Lord Jesus Christ comes again.
In Christ you have been made rich in every way, in all your speaking . . . Seriously, God? You blow me away. You knew how the enemy would attack me hours later and this morning you gave me this verse, this truth, this sword to wield today. I don’t go into battle alone, and I don’t go in unclothed. You have wrapped me in your armor and even better you have given me a weapon, my sword, Your Word.
I can’t get over the feeling someone needs to hear those words today. Someone needs to know you aren’t the only one. Someone needs to hear, “Stand firm.” Someone needs to let Ephesians 6:19-20 sink deep within her soul so she can declare the gospel fearlessly. I know one of those someones is me.