June finally arrives. Yay! Here in New York, summer is drawing near. Time for shorts and sandals. Well, I think that nature got mad at us for going to the basement and packing up all our sweaters. Nature said, “AHA! You thought I left huh?” So we get hit with another cold front. Now we are on the run for cover. I think about how we always have to be prepared and carry an umbrella. It should always be somewhere close by and easy to access. The umbrella is our covering. It is our shield and protection against this ever-changing weather. We also have to make sure we have extra sweaters on standby that can quickly cover us. How much more shall we make adequate protection for our souls? The Word of God reminds us to always be sober and watchful.
1 Peter 5:8-11 (Phillips Translation)
Be self-controlled and vigilant always, for your enemy the devil is always about, prowling like a lion roaring for its prey. Resist him, standing firm in your faith and remember that the strain is the same for all your fellow-Christians in other parts of the world. And after you have borne these sufferings a very little while, God himself (from whom we receive all grace and who has called you to share his eternal splendor through Christ) will make you whole and secure and strong. All power is his for ever and ever, amen!
We have to know as Christians [Believers in Christ] that we will always be a prey for the enemy [devil]. The Word tells us that he is roaming about like a lion seeking WHO he can devour. I am sure that if I was a lion out for prey, being the hungry person that I am, would want to go after something plump and filled with meat! The same way the lion is not going to want a scrawny piece of food. He is hungry and is going to try to go after the next best meal. As Christians this would mean the enemy will be after the ones that have callings over their lives. The ones that have special talents for the Lord. The ones that are used as vessels for the Kingdom of God. Some others actually have heavier attacks than others but we all have some sort of struggles. We may think this is unfair but it is actually a strategic plan of Satan to try to take us off course. This is why there are strong attacks against churches, against marriages, against families and friendships. The enemy wants to divide and devour us because he knows the power that we possess!
How can we stand against the enemy? What can we do? Do we think a day off here and there with no food will keep us nourished? Not so. We need to be fed every single day with proper food. For our spirits, we need to be fed with the Word of God and with prayer. We need to be constantly nourished and kept healthy so that we are prepared to endure anything that comes our way. We must be ready with the armor of God! That is our umbrella of protection against any wind, rain or storm.
Ephesians 6:10-17 (New International Version) The Armor of God
Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 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. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
The Word of God is our source of protection and keeping a constant connection with God through prayer is necessary for us to function effectively from day to day. Having a daily communion with God helps us to draw upon His presence and power. We must read the Word of God. That cannot be emphasized enough. We have to pick up the Word of God and use it. Bring it with you to work, have copies of it everywhere, plaster it on your walls, write it down, repeat it over and over until it becomes a part of you. Unfortunately, this is NOT a common practice in Christianity today. We are bogged down with work, home life, social media, activities and things that hinder us from seeking the nourishment that is necessary for our spiritual growth. None of these activities are bad but they can distract us from spending time daily. If the enemy is strategic in his planning, shouldn’t we be planning effectively? We have to plan our days wisely. Redeeming the time. Connecting to our ultimate source of strength and protection. So this may mean disconnecting from some activities that completely drain us so that we have energy to spend the time building our spirits.
Carry your umbrella [the Word of God] everyday. You never know when the rain is going to come down. You never know when it is going to suddenly get cold again. This is a part of life for seasons to change. Have a sweater nearby [constant prayer] as a covering for you. Always stand firm and ready for anything that comes your way. The Word of God is definitely going to cover you – especially when you use it during your time of prayer as well. The Word makes your entire communion with God more effective. This enriches your relationship with your Heavenly Father. The Word makes you aware of who Jesus Christ is and all that He has done for you. The Word makes you recognize the ever-present help of the Holy Spirit that is living on the very inside of you.
If you don’t know Him today, you can…it is in His Word and He has always been waiting for you! He is ready to cover you with His word. Romans 10:8-10, But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith which we preach): that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.