In my last blog, I spoke of miracles. I talked about the many miracles I witnessed while working on a fire/rescue squad. During that time, I was often asked how we were able to handle so many horrific situations and still maintain our sanity, (Our rescue responded to approximately 700 calls per month). The answer was preparation. We had several thousand hours of emergency medical training, fire training, situational training and emergency management training. The more preparedness training we had, along with experience, the easier it was to respond to a situation opposed to reacting to a situation.
I found the same holds true for Christians. Often, we find ourselves in a situation where we have to battle the “slings and arrows” of Satan through non-believers. Sometimes the weapons aren’t pointed directly at us, rather, our faith, confidence and peace are attacked by what is going on in the world. Satan is very skilled at using the weapons of fear and doubt. If we are not “prepared” for this onslaught, the “prince of lies” can make us question our faith or doubt that he is real. It seems like he sometimes uses the media to that advantage but when overtly attacked, St.Paul tells us in Ephesians to “put on the full armor of God”!!
In recent weeks our Pastors have been sending the message of putting on the “full armor” of God. In Luke chapter 4, we learn that Jesus was led to the desert by the Spirit where, for 40 days he was tempted by the Devil. The Devil will always attack our weaknesses. In this case, Jesus hadn’t eaten in 40 days. He was hungry! What a cruel temptation. Jesus could have easily turned the stones into bread. But, with the belt of truth, the breastplate of righteousness, the shield of faith and the sword of the Spirit, Jesus was able to defeat Satan’s temptations.
Like Jesus, we too have to be prepared to fight evil, even at a moments notice. How? Just as rescue training made difficult tasks more manageable, so it is with temptation preparedness. We need to be in the “word” every day. That is our sword and truth, our preparedness, our training! The “Word” renders Satan powerless!
I remember, as a young boy, my pastor once told our Sunday School class that when we are tempted to do something we know is wrong, PRAY! He assured us that if we immediately pray about it, chances are, we won’t do what we are being tempted to do. The more biblically prepared you are, the greater your chances are of positively responding to a situation opposed to negatively reacting to it.