We are almost at the end of our "Ephesians" series! Sunday's sermon was eye opening & encouraging for me.
"Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 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." Ephesians 6:10-12
Until we take our last breath we are fighting a war against "spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms". The opposing team is bold enough to think they have a chance to win on God's territory. They are out for blood & will take it any way they can. (Para phasing Justin's illustration) Our enemy is NOT the red character with horns & a pitchfork trick-or-treating on October 31st. He is crafty & intelligent. He has mastered the art of destroying lives. He is the father of lies & the greatest illusionist of all time. He studies our weaknesses and if we don't fight back, he will use them to devour our faith. He wants us to forget that God says, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in WEAKNESS."
If you're like me, I have struggled with the SAME things for longer than I can remember... Feelings of insecurity & all the ugly emotions & lies that are attached to it! It hinders my walk with Jesus. It creates walls in my marriage. It keeps me from living life with purpose (to share Jesus FREELY). It makes me forget who I am in Jesus and how deeply He loves me. But I don't need to be stuck here. Christ's power can be made perfect in this weakness of mine. God has given me everything I need to stand & be victorious.
"14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. " (Ephesians 6:14-17)