Want to be equipped for battle? Yes. We are in a battle. It's a spiritual one and swirls around us all the time. The enemy of our souls wants to side line if we are believers and wants, at all costs, to keep those who don't know Jesus ignorant of Who He is and how much He loves us. If we want to be strong in the Lord, fighting on our knees for those we love, we need to Armor Up. Join Nicole and Sharon for a lively discussion about being a soldier for Christ - uniquely equipped to fight and win against all enemies.
Speaker 1 (00:03):
Is your world a little crazy and off kilter at the moment, feeling a bit frazzled? Well then, you’ve found the perfect place to regain some quiet today. Welcome to the Sweet Selah Moments Podcast, where we study his Word and encourage one another. The Sweet Selah Moments Podcast is a cooperative production of Word Radio and Sweet Selah Ministries.
Welcome to the Sweet Selah Moments Podcast. Today’s the day we form a battle plan, listeners. This is episode 80, Armor Up. Well, Sharon, much as I wish life was all about pretty fields of flowers and warm relationships without heartache the reality is that we are in a battle as Christians that won’t stop until Jesus returns or we enter heaven, whichever comes first. I’m glad we’re gonna talk about this today. I wanna be equipped and I want to help my daughters to be equipped. It’s challenging to talk to them about spiritual warfare.
Of all the things. Yes. That’s a hard one.
Oh, it’s tough, yes. (Sharon: Yeah) So, when I talk to my girls about spiritual warfare, I use the verse that describes Satan as a roaring lion, the one that he’s roaming about the earth and seeking to destroy us. So they’re aware that Satan is actively working against us and trying to break our relationship with Christ. And the picture of a lion kind of, you know, they can understand that as a kid.
You know what a lion looks like, right?
Yeah. And they’re big.
And they’re big and scary. They can be scary. And we’ve talked about demons and angels too, but I always try to put the emphasis on how God always protects his children. So as not to cause too much fear.
Right. I mean, God’s got them, yeah, yeah.
He’s got them. So they just need to be aware that this exists, you know, (Sharon: Mm-hmm) and I’ve sung lullabies to them since they were little and one of the songs that I sing is the ‘all night, all day angels watching over me, my Lord’ song, it’s one of their lullabies.
Oh, I love that.
So whenever they’re like, now I lay me down to sleep and angels are watching over me so that they know that God’s presence is there even when they’re snoring away and don’t know that God is the one that’s always with them.
It’s so true.
Yeah. Cause they, they need to know the truth and be on guard, but also to remember where their hope is, you know?
Yes, yes they do. I agree. And the Bible even says that, angels are assigned to little ones.
Yes. I love that verse.
They get like a special angel. (Nicole: I know) And they need one.
They do, the stuff they get into.
Cause they get into so much trouble. (Nicole: I know)
So, oh, it’s a tricky subject for all of us. (Nicole: Mm-hmm) We live in a physical world where we can see and touch things but we also live in a spiritual world. God is Spirit and he is realer than real. He’s realer than the things we touch. So are demons. So let’s just dig right into our passage today and talk about how God fully equips his children to ward off spiritual attacks. Why don’t you start?
All right. I’ll start with verse 10. The Whole Armor of God is the name of this section. “A final word, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power.”
“Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil.”
“For we are not fighting against flesh and blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.”
“Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle, you will still be standing firm.”
(Hmm) “Stand your ground, putting on the belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness.”
“For shoes put on the peace that comes from the good news so that you will be fully prepared.”
“In addition to all of these, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil.”
“Put on salvation as your helmet and take the sword of the spirit, which is the word of God.”
“Pray in the spirit at all times and on every occasion, stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere,”
“And pray for me too, ask God to give me the right words so I can boldly explain God’s mysterious plan that the good news is for Jews and Gentiles alike.”
“I’m in chains now still preaching this message as God’s ambassador. So pray that I will keep on speaking boldy for him as I should.”
I love that bold Paul.
Oh, I know.
I’m in chains now and I’m still preaching.
Yep, as I should.
Oh man, I love this passage. I’ve divided it into three sections, the threat, the armor, the help.
Ooh, I like that.
There we go. (Nicole: Yep) So we’re gonna start with the threat. What exactly do we need to watch out for? Who is this enemy? So I’m gonna read/reread Ephesians 6:10-12. “A final word, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil. For we are not fighting against flesh and blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.” Okay. I first wanna note that this is the final word. Paul’s winding down at the end of this letter with some important instructions. So, and I love how this section I’ve called ‘the threat’ starts out triumphantly, even though it’s talking about the threat, it doesn’t start out with that. It starts out with ‘be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power’. So let us just note, before we talk about the threat that God’s power is mighty. So what a call to action this is, huh Nicole?
Oh, I know. Yes. And we need to remember that God is bigger and stronger than anyone, any evil, these evil forces and unseen things, you know, and in his power, nothing is impossible. We do not have to battle this in our own strength, nor can we.
We need God and his mighty power to go to battle for us.
Yes. And that’s how Paul begins it. Final word. You’ve got God’s mighty power.
So now let’s (Nicole: Yeah) Now that’s a thought, Paul says we need to stand firm against the devil’s strategies. So what are the strategies?
Hmm. I think one of his really good strategies is taking just enough truth and lacing it in with his lies so it seems okay at first, if we’re not on guard or checking it against the scriptures. Kinda lures you, like, oh yeah, that’s in the Bible. Oh wait. That’s not—
That’s not actually in the Bible.
That’s not right,
Right. Yeah. Yeah. He wants us to justify things that are not justifiable. (Nicole: Yeah, yeah) Absolutely. He does. So yeah, he twists. He’s a liar. He is.
Yep, well, cause he is mentioned as an angel of light. So he’s not this horrible, ugly creature. He’s this beautiful creature that lures us in. Like, oh no, this is good. He’s a deceiver.
Yeah. Yeah, he’s a deceiver, absolutely, and a liar. You know, I think I’ve said this before in a podcast, but I just remember it so clearly when I worked with a lady that had multiple sclerosis, she had a favorite soap opera.
So I got in the habit of watching it with her. So even after Ray and I were married, I’d come home from teaching school and Ray wouldn’t be home for a couple of hours. So I would indulge in keeping up with the lives, you know, The Days of Our Lives soap opera or whatever it was. (Nicole: Right) But the thing that stopped me one day was the way they wired a scene where this wife has a very busy husband who pays no attention to her. And he’s kind of mean in his disinterest and she’s so hurt. You see her hurt and then she meets this other guy. And he is so attentive and he is everything the husband isn’t.
And the day I found myself rooting for adultery was the last day I ever watched.
And it happens so quickly, you don’t even know until you’re like, wait a minute.
What am I doing?
This is wrong. Right?
What am I doing? (Nicole: Yeah) And there was just enough beauty in it, the way they lied in the story. (Nicole: Yeah) And that’s what Satan does. You’re right.
And it’s a slow leading to evil. It’s never— cause we’re not stupid. We can notice when something is blatantly evil and thrown at us or a straight up lie. But when things are like that frog in the water, slowly turned up, temperature (Sharon: Slowly turning it up) We don’t even know. We get comfortable and then we get more comfortable and then we’re like, oh, sometimes when it’s too late.
And now we’ve sinned.
Exactly so, yeah.
There is strategy to this.
Yeah, there is. The other thing is just, he’s an accuser. He accuses the brethren day and night, the Bible says, and he condemns. (Nicole: Yes) So, if he can’t make us do wrong (Nicole Mm-hmm) he’s gonna stop us from doing good by making us feel so unworthy because of past sins (Nicole: Oh yeah) that we won’t do anything.
Right. Or we won’t go to God for that forgiveness (Sharon: Right) and that shame that comes from him.
Or even if we have, we’re still beating ourselves up instead of believing we’re forgiven. And we’re like, well I can’t take on a role of helping others because I know who I’ve been.
Well, so what? Paul was murdering Christians, (Nicole: Right) come on, before he accepted Christ. So I think another strategy is to keep us in a place of defeat even as Christians so we don’t use our spiritual gifts for good. (Nicole: Yeah) He sidelines us. (Nicole: Mm-hmm) He’s wicked.
He is wicked.
All right. Okay. Well, not only that, the devil has help. The list Paul gives is just a little daunting here.
There are evil rulers, authorities in the unseen world, mighty powers in this dark world and evil spirits in the heavenly places, whatever that means. It confuses me. But it means, it sounds like there’s even rankings among demons. That they’re so organized that there are rulers over other demons. So I’m just really glad God doesn’t show me all of this and that it remains hidden.
Oh, I know. So he’s not just this like, oh, we’ll just see what trouble we can create today. He is strategic.
He’s strategic and he has minions.
He’s got one mission. Yes, yes. And he’s got one mission in mind. He hates God. It says that in the Bible that he hates us because he hates God first and we’re his children.
So, they’re not these cute little things that pop up on our shoulders dressed in red suits and a pitchfork like an old cartoon, (Sharon: Right, right) like the angel and the demon.
Yeah. Yeah. Like, no.
Like No. We have to remember that these are fallen angels and some of the stories of angels in the Bible, they’re quite magnificent creatures.
Yes, they are.
You know? And they should not be taken lightly. They’re seeking pure evil and they’re serving pure evil and they’re out for our destruction period.
Yes. Yes, fallen angels are no joke.
All right. Okay. That’s the threat. We got the threat down.
We got that, yeah.
Paul wants the people of Ephesus, this is the, you know, letter to the Ephesians to be aware, because they’re in a dark place with lots of idols and I am sure unseen powers all around them. (Nicole: Oh, yeah. Yep) Now we get to the good part.
Okay. Enough of that. We are not victims cowering in the dark here. We have everything we need for this fight.
Ah, so we’re onto armor up section two. I’m done with talking about devils and demons. Go to the good stuff, Nicole.
All right. The armor, this section, we’re gonna call this the armor, “Therefore put on every piece of God’s armor so you’ll be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle, you will still be standing firm, stand your ground, putting on the belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness. For shoes put on the peace that comes from the good news so that you’ll be fully prepared. In addition to all of this, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil, put on salvation as your helmet and take the sword of the spirit, which is the word of God”. You know, I read about the dark forces in this section before, and then we read about this armor and it makes us, makes you wonder how, when we have those really hard days and we don’t armor up, like how can we even think we can survive (Sharon: No kidding) all of that without God?
And we have horrible moments and go, well, yeah, I didn’t armor up.
I didn’t armor up at all.
And be completely attacked, you know?
That’s so true. That is. (Nicole: Yeah) Yeah.
And it’s funny. I remember as a kid going to a friend’s house to play and I’m pretty sure every little boy had the armor of Christ’s playset in his home, you know, the little plastic ones? You know, but it was a really great visual to physically see the things listed out on these little plastic armor plates that we would put on, you know?
Yep. Yeah, and you literally armored up.
We did. But I need to go over this with my girls more, Sharon. I think I even forget the specific pieces of armor and I rely a lot on prayer or verses that I remember, but I wanna be more intentional about specifically mentioning each piece and the importance of it. (Sharon: Yes) They need to know. (Sharon: They do) They need to be ready, you know?
They do. Yeah.
So let’s start that now. Let’s talk about the first piece of armor mentioned, and that is the belt of truth. We know that the only true source of absolute truth is the Bible. Yes. We have got to know God’s word and memorize scriptures so that we are ready with the truth when we are blasted with lies from all directions.
Absolutely. We do. Yes. Yep. I love how verse 14 says ‘stand your ground’. And one way we do that is with truth. (Nicole: Yeah) Because we know it’s right. And we know it’s true. (Nicole: Yep) There are times we need to recite the truth to keep us strong and firm, you know?
Yeah. But if we’ve got it, we can do that.
Right. It’s there for that.
All right. Well, the next piece is the body armor of God’s righteousness. I love this one because it’s all God. (Nicole: Mmm) He is the only one that can cloth clothe us with righteousness.
We ask him to forgive our sins and then we’re righteous. I think this goes back to the belt of truth actually. We speak the truth about our failures. When we confess sin, we immediately come to God and ask to be washed clean, and then we’re armored up. That’s all we have to do.
That’s so effortless.
Oh, my goodness. The devil can say nothing. We stand righteous. No accusations can be leveled against us because we’ve been forgiven. Those sins and stains are gone.
Thank you, Jesus.
I know. I actually love confessing. I didn’t used to, but now I just see the value of not walking around under condemnation. Yeah. I sinned.
Clean me, Lord.
I’m sorry. Clean me up again.
Yeah. Oh, I love that.
So, when we confess our sins and speak the truth out loud about them to God and other people if we’ve offended them too, then the Bible promises, here’s truth: God is faithful and just, and forgives all of those sins and cleanses us from all unrighteousness. And there we are in our gleaming armor again. (Nicole: Yes) I’m protected. (Nicole: Yeah) The breast plate of righteousness.
Oh, (Sharon: So good) perfect. All right, next, verse 15 says, “For shoes put on the peace that comes from the good news so you’ll be fully prepared”. So this one’s interesting. I see two things in here, Sharon. For shoes, you put them on and you’re ready to move. You know, you don’t put on shoes and then lay back on the couch or take a nap, you know? So I think the shoes symbolize that we should be ready to go and spread the good news about Jesus Christ. And with that carry such a supernatural peace, you know?
Knowing that despite the war going on around us, we have hope and ultimate peace in Christ and with the readiness to spread the gospel and the peace that comes from knowing it, we are fully prepared for anything that the devil throws at us.
You’re right. You’re right. I love that it’s an action. You’re right. I put on my shoes when I’m going out.
Yeah. I’m barefoot in my house when I’m doing my chores. If I’m leaving the house, those shoes are on. I’m ready.
Those shoes are on. That’s right. And we’re sharing the gospel of peace with others. (Nicole: Yeah) We best armor up and not just keep it to ourselves. (Nicole: Yeah) There’s a lot of people out there.
That don’t have that peace.
That they don’t have any armor.
Or the good news, which starts that whole process.
That’s a good one.
Yeah. Well, we’ve talked about truth and righteousness and the peace that comes from sharing the good news. Now we hold out our shield of faith to stop the fiery darts of the devil. So he’s actively throwing stuff at us. (Nicole: Yeah) When the devil whispers, for example, no one cares about you. We hold out our shield and declare that’s a lie. God has loved me with an everlasting love. Top that. Right?
I think asking God to increase our faith is a really important prayer. Lord, give me more and more faith. I want that shield in place. (Nicole: Mm-hmm) Whatever I feel is not the reality. You know, like on a cloudy day, there’s still sunshine. You don’t see it, but it’s there. God is always there. Immovable. God is. And faith says whether I feel him at the moment, whether he’s answered my prayers, yes or no. (Nicole: Right) Whether I’m in a messy situation or a happy one, he’s still there. He still loves me. And that’s forever.
And that shield in place, enabled, Oh, also, I just thought of another one. I’m just lifting my shield. Also we know that everything we go through has purpose. (Nicole: Yes) And that makes all the difference in the world. I don’t know why you’re letting this happen to me, Lord, but I know you are gonna work this out for good. And that it’s gonna be for your glory someday.
Mmm. That’s so good.
And that keeps the shield in place as well.
It does. And the shield is not us. We don’t have to sit there and go, I’m a good person. I did this. And remember what we’ve done. That shield is all God.
It’s all God.
Because our shield would be not even able to be lifted up.
Exactly. You’re right.
Or it’d break so easy, but this, he is our shield. So, we don’t have to you know, that faith as a mustard seed props up that shield.
I know, isn’t that good?
He has got like a hundred percent protection (Sharon: He does) for any of us that hold up that shield, whether trembling or standing firm.
Yeah. And the shield is not us. And it’s not faith in us. (Nicole: No) It’s faith in him. (Nicole: Yeah) And knowing that we are safe because we’re his.
Oh, it’s so good.
Oh, I like that one. All right, the next piece of armor is also very essential. It’s the helmet of salvation. So our brain is arguably, one of the most important parts of our body.
It is indeed.
It is the information center for our entire body. And without it, the rest of our body is lost. So the helmet of salvation is an important piece because it guards our entire being.
If we are saved, trusting in Jesus with our lives, then no matter what happens here on earth, we still have the promise of salvation and eternity with him.
We do. That’s so cool. The helmet of salvation means eternal protection forever. (Nicole: Mmm) We can’t lose.
No, we can’t.
Oh, I love that.
We can’t lose. That’s an amazing statement.
Right, right. Yeah. What is it? You can lose a few skirmishes, but the war’s already been won.
Mmm, that’s amazing.
So, it’s just so cool.
Oh, I love it. Okay. Well, our last piece is an offensive weapon. You know, the shield is sort of protective, the helmet’s protective. Some of these are protective, but this is offensive, the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. (Nicole: Hmm) I love talking about how to use the Bible as a sword. I really do. So we’re gonna imagine for a minute, we’re gonna imagine a young man back in medieval times when they actually used swords.
You know, that was part of their equipment. So, let’s imagine that this young man is being trained to be a swordsman, that he’s gonna be a knight, and he’s gonna go to battle with a sword. So he picks up the sword and it’s really heavy. That noise was me dropping my hand.
Cause it’s so heavy.
Can’t even hold it. And he can hardly do any of the movements, you know, all those skillful, little parryings and thrusting things that you do with the sword, that his teacher does. So, he looks at the sword and he says, well, this doesn’t work. (Nicole: No) And he walks away now, what is wrong with that picture?
Well, it’s not the sword that’s the problem.
Exactly! The sword’s fine. It’s his arm that’s the problem. It’s the lack of practice. (Nicole: Yeah) Right? If he would stick with it, he’d build sword muscles. His wrist would get stronger. His arm would get stronger. The more times he parried or thrusted, or I don’t know what those terms are, but whatever you have to do with the sword things.
The better he’d get at it.
Mmm. That’s true.
You know, I feel like we do the same thing with the Bible. It’s a sword to be wielded against the enemy who tells us lies, but we need practice with it. You know, if you pick up the Bible one day and you read a verse and you say, well, that didn’t work. (Nicole: Right) Okay. No, no. That’s not the problem here.
No, it’s not the Bible.
It’s not the problem. (Nicole: Right) It’s that you’ve gotta practice wielding the sword. (Nicole: Yes) You have to practice saying the things, you know, and you literally say the things. When Ray was in the Persian Gulf War, I had a tendency to be fearful for obvious reasons.
Oh, yeah. Yeah.
I’d hear that a scud missile had fallen near an American base in Kuwait. Well, Ray was in an American base in Kuwait, so it could have hit him. (Nicole: Yeah) So it was easy to be fearful.
Oh, for sure.
I just feel like it was, and I was good at it. And then we went to a English speaking church on what they call the Economy in Germany, (Nicole: Oh) not the chapel on post.
We had felt led to this church, but we were also being warned about terrorists that were out to hurt Americans (Nicole: Oh, my word) because of the war. (Nicole: Yeah) So, our church had in big letters on the windows in downtown Stuttgart ‘English-Speaking’ (Nicole: Oh, no!) Right.
It’s like a big bullseye, right?
It’s like a bullseye. And I’m like, Oh, really Lord, do you want us there? So somebody new would come to church and Nicole I’d be like, are they carrying anything that could hold a bomb?
Oh my goodness.
Are they wearing a coat? Is there anything? So I could have lived in terror (Nicole: Mm-hmm) and for a very short time, I did. I lived in terror of everything. (Nicole: Yeah) So, but I learned to use my sword and at first it was heavy and it was hard to wield. And I would forget (Nicole: Yeah) that I had a verse that I’d memorized that I was supposed to pull out.
But this is the verse in the King James Version. “There is no fear in love”. (Nicole: Mm) “But perfect love casteth out fear because fear hath torment”. I learned it in the King James Version. And you know, over time it helped because I’d say, there is no fear in love. There is no fear in love. Wait a second, I’m feeling fear. God’s love. If I’m feeling fear and God is love and there’s no fear in love. (Nicole: Right) This fear I’m feeling is not from God. Whoa, wait a second.
Hold on a minute.
It’s an attack.
Right. This is an attack.
Right. So then I’d actually recognize it as an attack.
But I had to first have the verse in my head.
Right. And then you could be prepared for the attack.
Right, right. So, then the next part of the verse says “But perfect love casteth out fear”. So I would point out to God that he’s perfect love and I still had fear. So I’d be like, you got perfect love here, could you cast out the fear? I need it. (Nicole: Throw it away) And if it didn’t quote ‘work’ the first time I’d keep asking, I’d learn to practice with it and start to believe that his perfect love was able to cast out the fear I was feeling.
Oh, I love that.
Because fear has torment, right? (Nicole: Yeah) And that’s why I know it’s not from God. God doesn’t torment us. (Nicole: No) So, I would say, Lord, I need your perfect love. Surround me with it. Fill me with it. Let me remember. And I got to parry and thrust as I learned to pray using scripture. And it did not happen immediately. I had to practice.
Right. And you kept on seeking and kept on knocking.
And I kept on doing it. And this is the thing, we definitely give up too soon.
Oh, we do.
We do. We need to work it. Right.
We want a quick fix. Yes.
Or, here’s another one, I’m on a roll now. (Nicole: I love it) When I would be so weary working for Dad Gamble (Nicole: Oh, yeah) I never slept well, the whole time he was with us, we had a monitor in our room. (Nicole: Yeah) And he would need me in the night.
And just like, when you have an infant that might need you in the night, you sleep different.
You never quite get to that level of sleep, you’re always just barely awake so you can hear them.
Yeah. And ironically, even though it was, oh, Ray’s father. (Nicole: Yeah) Ray had no trouble sleeping. I think God puts in a woman, this light sleep thing and Ray missed that gene totally. Oh my goodness. So anyways, I was tired a lot. (Nicole: Yeah) So my go-to verse was where God says, “But my strength is made perfect in your weakness”. (Nicole: Oh) And so I would over and over say, you see my weakness. It’s a really good time for your strength to show up cause I’m out.
I’m out of my own. Yeah.
I’m out of my own.
I was out last week.
And I’m leaning on yours and I would say that over and over again, and I would practice that. And do you know what? I got his strength.
He always comes through for us.
I really, really got his strength in times when I had none.
Oh, I love that. Mm-hmm.
So, it works, but you don’t pick up the sword one time and go, oh, that didn’t work. (Nicole: Right) Okay. Just keep doing it people.
Yes. Keep practicing.
Oh man. (Nicole: I know) Okay. How about you? Any examples of using the Bible as a literal sword?
Yeah, I think about motherhood too. Cause mother caregiving is hard.
It is hard in any stage.
It’s hard. In any stage. Yes. And one of my favorite verses that I go to a lot in motherhood, it’s actually in like four different places in my home. It’s in Galatians, it’s Galatians 6:9, “And let us not grow weary of doing good for in due season we will reap a harvest of plenty if we don’t give up.”
If we don’t give up.
You know, I love that.
And also the verse that “the Lord will fight for us and we need only to be still.” You know, that comes to my mind often when I’m feeling overwhelmed or if I feel I’ve been treated unfairly, I need to bolster up my story and defend myself. You know, knowing that God is on my side, that he’s fighting for me. It gives me such hope.
It does. And it reminds you to shhhh, just be still.
Stop Nicole. Just be still. (Sharon: Yeah) God’s got this.
Yeah. Oh, Nicole, so good.
Okay. I’ve got my sword, I’ve got my shield. You do it.
You do it cause I can’t. (Nicole: Right) Oh man. Okay. Well, we looked at the threat, the devil and his demons. We looked at the armor, which is pretty amazing when we armor up, but we have more. Wait, wait, there’s more.
Last we’re gonna look at the help.
Oh, that’s right.
So, I’ll read all about the fact that we not only have armor, but, help in this warfare from Ephesians 6:18-20. “Pray in the Spirit (Sharon: We have the holy Spirit) at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere.” The spirit works through our prayers. And then Paul says, “And pray for me too, ask God to give me the right words so I can boldly explain God’s mysterious plan that the good news is for Jews and Gentiles alike. I am in chains now still preaching this message as God’s ambassador. So pray, (get the holy Spirit’s help) that I will keep on speaking boldly for him as I should”. So I just answered the question I was gonna to ask you, so where’s our help, but how does he help? How does the spirit help us?
Oh, this is so cool. When we pray, the spirit helps us on every occasion.
He’s there ready to help. It’s crazy. For a temptation, discouragement, when we’re angry, lonely, you name it. And I love how we, as believers are to pray for each other. That’s just so cool, Sharon, that we have other Christians praying for us and sending extra help when we need it to fight these battles in life.
It’s awesome. It really is.
We’re not alone. We have almighty God inside us, helping us. And fellow Christians sending that extra help.
Yes, exactly. Every time we do a podcast, people are praying.
Oh, I know.
It’s the only way we get through it.
Oh I know, I so feel it. We so feel it and we thank you.
Yes. Oh, I love how Paul asked for prayer and he wouldn’t ask if he didn’t clearly believe that prayer mattered.
Why would Paul ask? (Nicole: Right) Jesus asked people to pray too. So prayer matters.
It does. Absolutely.
So, if they prayed for Paul, God was gonna answer in ways he wouldn’t if they didn’t, or Paul wouldn’t ask.
Things happen when we pray (Nicole: Yes) that won’t happen if we don’t. Not because God can’t (Nicole: Mm-hmm) but because God says ‘you ask me’. (Nicole: Yes). And then I will.
So, we gotta pray. (Nicole: Mm-hmm) So, he tells us that over and over, ask me. So, I love how Paul wants prayer, that he can boldly explain and preach from prison in chains. (Nicole: I know) You know, and I kind of always think of Paul is naturally bold, but I feel like when you’re in prison in chains, perhaps you do need an extra measure of boldness to be preaching.
Yeah. Courage to keep going you know?
Right. Right. So that extra boost of prayer, he needed to stay true to preach even to the point of death, which he ended up dying a martyr’s death.
Yeah. That’s right.
So, the prayers of the saints kept Paul going strong to the end.
Oh. That’s beautiful.
So good. Because the holy Spirit is the one that works. He’s the help (Nicole: Yes) through the prayer. (Nicole: Yep) So, so Nicole, have you ever had a time in your life where you just knew people were praying for you?
Oh yes. Just recently. Oh, we’ve had such a slew of illnesses and just crazy little troubles pop up since about mid-December.
I know it. It’s been awful.
It’s been a long season. But you know, we could have gotten really discouraged and really sick of each other cause we were home for long stretches of time (Sharon: Forever, Nicole) for various reasons.
You were home forever.
Forever, with my four children and my husband who wasn’t at work. So we could have gotten really sick of each other but you know, we had so many people praying for us Sharon, that there were days where I could just feel peace. (Sharon: Yes) And I found myself accepting the confinement with more grace than I would ever have done on my own.
This was prayer.
Cause I like being out. I love people, I need to get out of my house. And I didn’t have that horrible feeling of needing to escape my house, you know? We found so much joy in this forced family time as we all recovered from various ailments and such. And we’ve all kind of marveled that we’ve come out of this stronger as a family and that we were even able to iron out some of those things that we had been avoiding cause we didn’t have the time to.
Oh, that’s neat.
Yeah. Some troubles that, you know, things that Josh and I need to talk over and, or work out with our kids as far as discipline and stuff, and even setting up some better habits for our family.
I love that.
We’ve come out better from this, from being stuck at home like, only God can turn a series of unfortunate events into this beautiful time of rest and strengthening for our family. You know? And it’s all from the prayers of his faithful people.
It is, it is. It’s the holy Spirit.
This could have been really bad.
It could have. Praise God. That’s a beautiful, very recent example.
Ah, yes. Two weeks ago, guys, two weeks ago.
I love how you talk about the joy that comes because when I’m getting ready to speak every once in a while, I get what I call a joy burst, outta nowhere. And I’m like, someone is praying for me right now.
Oh, I love that. (It gives me goosebumps)
I know they are because I am feeling such a joy to be in this place, doing what God’s called me to do. So thank you everybody that prays.
Now I shall pray. Oh Father, you do not leave us without help. How we praise you that no matter what tactics, the enemy might try to throw against your own dear children, they’re matched far beyond enough with the armor, with the truth, with faith, with the word of God and with the prayers of your saints. You almighty God, have given us everything we need to succeed. And we thank you. We glory in the fact that you are the Victor and that there will come a time when you will crush the enemy under your feet for all time. Holy, holy God we praise you, Jesus. Amen.
Amen. How about you listener? Have you had a time in your life when God’s word or prayer was instrumental in helping you do what was right? We’d love to hear from you. We surely appreciate your prayers for us. We often feel carried by the Spirit during these podcasts and we know that God is answering many podcast partner prayers. Thank you. Write us any time @SweetSelah.org/podcast and come back next week for our final episode in season five, episode 81, Encourage. Until then armor up, friends. Stand firm in the Lord.
Speaker 1 (31:44):
We are so glad you stopped for a while with us. The Sweet Selah Moments Podcast is a cooperative production of Word Radio and Sweet Selah Ministries. More information about this podcast can be found at SweetSelah.org. Thank you for joining us.
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