I have mentioned earlier in the series about how important our mindset is in saying 'yes' to God and following through.
We all have those wounds that Satan knows exactly how to push on when we are stretching, growing and changing. When we begin to think we CAN make a difference or that we CAN do that thing God is calling us to do, then we are often slammed with fear, feelings of being too overwhelmed, too busy or under-prepared. Or we face opposition of others.
We need to wrap ourselves in truth.
In our own thoughts and feelings, we are easily derailed and our effectiveness and purpose are taken out. It is significant that the first piece of the armor of God to put on is the belt of truth, and all other armor attaches to this belt. The truth is key in battling the father of lies.
So, how do you put the armor on? Pursue truth — search the Word of God. Don’t just skim through it, don’t just read the parts that are easy for you to hear, or only teach to others. Really study the Scriptures. I have definitely fallen into the trap of teaching something in Sunday School that I actually was not believing for myself. I was allowing feelings and lies to take the place of truth, and was not renewing my mind daily in God’s Word.
Take extra steps and pray God’s Word, memorize it and use it as your weapon (the Sword of the Spirit). When I feel push back and a fight when I am trying to take new ground with a 'yes' to God, I have learned (definitely the slow, hard way) to search Scriptures I specifically need. I put those everywhere —- on post-it notes, on my phone as reminders, on the fridge and bathroom mirrors. I will actually say those Scriptures out loud when I feel fear or lies creeping in. Ladies, you are fought against so diligently because you have such a great purpose and have access to many lives to bring to salvation and discipleship.
We must remember to actively make the effort to grow in our relationships with Christ--to walk in righteousness, peace and faith. Seek out trusted and wise relationships to help you when you are struggling. Ask the Holy Spirit daily to remind you of the truth, to help you focus on faith and truth in Him, and give you direction in your thoughts and actions.
It is also significant that the last piece of armor instructed to use is the sword of the Spirit and the sword is the only weapon that is both defensive and offensive. We may have seasons where we feel constantly defensive, but we have the power to take on the battle and have victory! This brings the armor of God full circle, beginning and ending with the power that comes from the truth of God’s Word. I know you know this, but sometimes we get bogged down with walking in this world and in ministry that we teach what we need to take hold of for our very own selves.
From the Perfectly Weak Bible Study, here is an excerpt related to our thoughts vs the armor of God. Take a little time to answer the questions for yourselves today.
1. Take a moment to pinpoint which area from the list below is the greatest spiritual battle you are currently facing:
battle for truth verses feelings in your mind
worry about the what-if’s
lack of faith
lack of peace
living so overwhelmed or overburdened
2. No one can defeat the Word of God. Nothing can take our armor off — only we can. We are the only ones that can leave ourselves vulnerable to worry, fear, lies, lack of faith and our peace being stolen. We can lower our weapons and choose not fight. We don’t do this consciously or on purpose, but that does mean that we ON PURPOSE have to CHOOSE each day to put it on and walk in His protection and power.
I encourage you to talk with God about which ways you can be more purposeful in putting on the Armor of God daily and choosing to set your mind on the truth of God’s Word. Take few minutes to list below practical steps you need to take.
Always remember that your ‘yes’ to God may be taking a step back or making room in your life for rest. Sometimes that is the greatest battle of all that we face.
3. If you struggle with letting emotions rule over truth, during this next week pay attention to notice your “I feel” thoughts and statements and replace them with “I know” thoughts and statements, basing them on Biblical truths. List some things you know to be true that you need to be reminded of.
4. If you don’t struggle with this, ask God who you can minister to this week by encouraging them.
Wrapped in Truth is ENTRY THREE in our blog series for January, Perfectly Weak, featuring the insights from ministry wife and author Casey Graves. Share with us what you find yourself hiding from or what dream you have pushed back behind other things.
Casey Graves is a wife, momma to two girls, and co-pastor/planter of Foundations Church in Tulsa, Oklahoma. She enjoys a good cup of coffee with a friend or a family date day when she finds some spare time. What draws her to Sanctuary is her desire to truly share her vulnerabilities and struggles to help others dealing with similar wounds and insecurities that come with ministry. Casey recently published her first book, Perfectly Weak, now available at Amazon.