Day 4: Not for the Faint of Heart
Most of us have heard sermons or read at least one book about spiritual warfare. And you can’t talk about spiritual warfare without talking about spiritual armor. The 40 Days reading for today does both. The subject is timely for me because I need this reminder. Sometimes I forget that the woman who called me a “right-winger,” and berated me for saying I base my positions on the Bible, is not my true enemy. Neither is the John McCain campaign worker who passed right on by me and my son at the National Right to Life convention without giving us any literature, which he enthusiastically handed to both people on either side of us. Neither is the guy who yelled the n-word at me and some other women praying in front of the abortion clinic yesterday. Dang, I guess I didn’t realize how much I really do need this reminder …
Anyway, my point is that if I’m not careful, other people’s garbage becomes fodder for my personal emotional manure pile. Being called names hurts. Don’t let anyone tell you it doesn’t. But I have a choice to make. I can either focus on individuals and their issues, or I can keep pressing. I can only keep pressing if I heed the instruction in Ephesians 6:12-13 to put on the armor of God. And I’ve become more serious about it after suffering serious spiritual setbacks in the past when I didn’t “armor up.”
Trust me, my armor was working overtime yesterday because when that guy started yelling out of his car window, and rode up over the sidewalk curb several times, I needed protection–from him and the dark resentment that started to rise within me.
To me, that’s the beauty of the armor. It protects from spiritual onslaughts. I probably would have recovered from any physical injury he might have inflicted. But how long might it have taken me to overcome a root of bitterness, or a seething anger? That would have lasted much longer and wrought eternal damage. So I’m thankful for the armor and I hope when people encounter me, I’m not someone against whom they feel they need protection.
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