S196P21 – Growth spurts: preparation

Eph. 6:14-15

Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace…

The palace had been still just a moment earlier.  Then, in the blink of an eye, a battle ensued.  First came the sounds of artillery firing in the near distance.  That was enough to send everyone scrambling for someone to direct them on where to go and what to do.  Then, as the battle grew closer, the floors and walls began to shake.  Lights flickered on and off, and the men became disoriented.  No one seemed to know the strategy for fighting back.  What should have been a team effort in war became every man for himself.  It was clear that none of these men had seen battle previously.  What was assumed was that they at least had trained for this day to come so that they would be ready to engage the enemy.  That assumption would prove to be wrong, and these man would fall in quick fashion simply because they had not been prepared.

No two days look the same in this life.  That can be especially true for those of us who have an enemy committed to waging war against us.  He is relentless in his attacks, and he is crafty in his strategy.  Not only that, but sin within us also wages war against us.  On top of that, we are called to battle in the Spirit for the sake of others.  All of this requires that we be prepared if we expect to be successful and effective.  The gospel of peace given to us by Jesus Christ is our preparation for these things.  He gives us specific instruction on how we are to wage this war, to mount a defense as well as our own offensive.  This is training that happens over time, and we must continually revisit and hold fast to the gospel message so that we can grow in our preparedness.  We must be ready for whatever comes our way, and the gospel makes that possible.

Jesus came here and spoke his words for a purpose.  What He shared is available to us today so that we can be prepared for the work we must do for the kingdom.  The gospel of peace is about confidence, authority, wisdom, and truth.  We must rely on this message if we are to count ourselves as ready for the war we have joined.  The gospel of peace as relayed by Jesus and expounded upon by his apostles is what we need to gain the victory.  Just as we must prepare the flesh for physical battle, we also must prepare the spirit for spiritual battle.  Let us dive into the gospel message anew and make sure that we are ready for the battles we must face.  Father, thank You for supplying us with what we need so that we can be ready always to fight for your glory and your kingdom.