This morning, as I sit in the stillness, my mind goes back to that morning 13 years ago. That morning that changed life as I knew it forever. A morning that would rock our world as Americans. That morning that brought the evil that we had only read about in the Bible or in history books right to our doorstep.
I am through one of my favorite sites on the internet, http://www.openbible.info/topics. I enter the topic “soldier” as my eyes mist over with thoughts of those lost since that fateful day. Of course I am always mindful of the centuries of soldiers lost in times of war but this particular conflict has been painful in a very personal way. The sacrifice of family and friends has left permanent rips in the fabric of my life.
The first scripture offered was Ephesians 6:11-18. Of course. Putting on the armor of God. Particularly relevant in that we are fighting an enemy who seeks to take away our right to worship God, freely and openly.
Only with God can we defeat this enemy.
Only with God can we win this fight.
Only with God can we understand the weapons that are needed as we head out the door each and every day.
How quickly we have become complacent again in terms of 9/11. “It will never happen here” has become an all too familiar statement I hear from way too many people. It saddens me that, whether we want it to happen or not, the battle will come here again. These people, this evil, these soldiers in satans army, will never give up trying to kill us.
We sometimes forget that when we call down angels from Heaven to surround us, care for us, protect us from harm, those who are evil are also calling upon the angels of the darkness who are very much a real and powerful army set on our destruction. “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 6:12
This morning, as with every morning since that morning, I sit in prayer for those who step forward to protect us. I am overwhelmed with love for those faces, known and unknown, who answered the call to give their lives to protect us. I am weeping with gratitude for a God who gives us the battle plan we need to defeat the enemy. But I also weep for those who turn a blind eye to the truth of His Word. Those who won’t heed the call, won’t put on the armor, won’t bow the knee in prayer.
Do not think that you are not called to be a soldier. You might not put on a uniform. You might not get a medal. You might not go to a foreign land. But you are very much a soldier in the army of God. He has called you. He has commissioned you. He has given you the weapons you need to carry.
Do you carry your weapon with you everywhere you go? You should. There should never be a time that you don’t have ready access to the Word of God. Keep one in your car, one in your desk, one in your briefcase, one on the nightstand, one beside the couch. Let no one who comes into your house miss the fact that you are a soldier for Him.
I pray for you as well. I pray for your strength. I pray for you to understand the battle. I pray for your family as you gather them around you in obedience to God’s call to spend time daily in His Word. Do not let your guard down for even one minute. The enemy is lurking in the shadows so we must always walk in the light. His Light.
I was looking through the different versions of this scripture and the one from The Message wrapped itself around my heart this morning. Pray. Pray often. Pray always. Pray for each other. Pray with each other.
“A Fight to the Finish
And that about wraps it up. God is strong, and he wants you strong. So take everything the Master has set out for you, well-made weapons of the best materials. And put them to use so you will be able to stand up to everything the Devil throws your way. This is no afternoon athletic contest that we’ll walk away from and forget about in a couple of hours. This is for keeps, a life-or-death fight to the finish against the Devil and all his angels.
Be prepared. You’re up against far more than you can handle on your own. Take all the help you can get, every weapon God has issued, so that when it’s all over but the shouting you’ll still be on your feet. Truth, righteousness, peace, faith, and salvation are more than words. Learn how to apply them. You’ll need them throughout your life. God’s Word is an indispensable weapon. In the same way, prayer is essential in this ongoing warfare. Pray hard and long. Pray for your brothers and sisters. Keep your eyes open. Keep each other’s spirits up so that no one falls behind or drops out.” Ephesians 6:11-18
In the words of a song written a few days after that fateful morning…..Where were you when the world stop turning, that September day?
©2014MichelleWelch, team member of Breath Of Life Women’s Ministries
photography by Michelle Welch, all rights reserved (except the 9-11 picture which was taken off the internet with no credit to photographer given)
The Message (MSG)
Copyright © 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002 by Eugene H. Peterson