Ever noticed how some people can carry a room and get everyone’s attention? Ever noticed how some people lose it and you hear everyone else in the room instead of the speaker? What is it? Do you have it? What are people thinking when you take the stage in life? Are they going to listen? … Today’s reading is interesting as some of these thoughts come to the mind of those listening. Are you speaking meekly or with power? Are you speaking on the topic with authority or as a reporter? Let’s take a look into today’s reading…(from Luke 4)
31Then Jesus went to Capernaum, a town in Galilee, where he taught the people on the Sabbath. 32They were all amazed at the way he taught, because he spoke with authority.
Are you able to see what is causing the strife or why the people who aren’t listening or who are speaking out aren’t listening? Today’s reading continues with…
33In the synagogue was a man who had the spirit of an evil demon in him; he screamed out in a loud voice, 34“Ah! What do you want with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Are you here to destroy us? I know who you are: you are God’s holy messenger!” 35Jesus ordered the spirit, “Be quiet and come out of the man!” The demon threw the man down in front of them and went out of him without doing him any harm. 36The people were all amazed and said to one another, “What kind of words are these? With authority and power this man gives orders to the evil spirits, and they come out!” 37And the report about Jesus spread everywhere in that region.
Are you praying without ceasing so that the Holy Spirit can speak wisdom into every situation? Are you praying without ceasing asking God to grant you the words and the confidence and the courage to speak up and speak out the words He gives you to say? Are you living in a way that will bring God the praise, the honor, and the glory? Are you making each day about Him and how you are able to glorify Him with your thoughts, your words, and your actions? Does your reputation proceed you? Does the report go before you? Does it spread so that people want to hear what you have to say?
As today’s reading continues into Ephesians 6 we are given some keys into how to prepare! We need to put on the full armor of God! Let’s just jump right into it…
10Finally, build up your strength in union with the Lord and by means of his mighty power. 11Put on all the armor that God gives you, so that you will be able to stand up against the Devil’s evil tricks. 12For we are not fighting against human beings but against the wicked spiritual forces in the heavenly world, the rulers, authorities, and cosmic powers of this dark age. 13So put on God’s armor now! Then when the evil day comes, you will be able to resist the enemy’s attacks; and after fighting to the end, you will still hold your ground. 14So stand ready, with truth as a belt tight around your waist, with righteousness as your breastplate, 15and as your shoes the readiness to announce the Good News of peace. 16At all times carry faith as a shield; for with it you will be able to put out all the burning arrows shot by the Evil One. 17And accept salvation as a helmet, and the word of God as the sword which the Spirit gives you. 18Do all this in prayer, asking for God’s help. Pray on every occasion, as the Spirit leads. For this reason keep alert and never give up; pray always for all God’s people. 19And pray also for me, that God will give me a message when I am ready to speak, so that I may speak boldly and make known the gospel’s secret. 20For the sake of this gospel I am an ambassador, though now I am in prison. Pray that I may be bold in speaking about the gospel as I should.
21Tychicus, our dear brother and faithful servant in the Lord’s work, will give you all the news about me, so that you may know how I am getting along. 22That is why I am sending him to you—to tell you how all of us are getting along and to encourage you. 23May God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ give to all Christians peace and love with faith. 24May God’s grace be with all those who love our Lord Jesus Christ with undying love.
The devil is full of tricks and we need to be prepared and standing firm. We need to be connected to God! We need to be walking in alignment with God’s will and plans for our lives! We need to be living in spirit and in truth! In such living we will be filled with the Spirit and able to live with the power of God within us. And as God’s Word speaks, we need to put on the full, not partial, the full armor of God. Why you may ask, so that we can stand up against the devil’s tricks. We aren’t in a fist fight, we aren’t fighting against flesh and blood, this battle is so much bigger, we are fighting against wicked spiritual forces and rulers, authorities, and powers of this dark world. So we need to put on the full armor so that when we are in the battle, we can resist the attacks of the enemy of our soul, and as the battle presses on not give up, don’t give in, persevere, fight till the end, finish strong, and after all of that still stand our ground! So do you know what to do?
- Stand ready! Put on the belt, nice and tight! It holds all your tools. It is the belt of TRUTH!
- Put on your breastplate to protect your heart and critical organs. Breastplate of RIGHTEOUSNESS!
- Put on your shoes to protect your feet as you run to spread the GOOD NEWS OF PEACE!
- Hold tight to your shield to fend off the fiery darts of hell! The shield is your FAITH!
- Protect your mind with your helmet, the HELMET OF SALVATION! Knowing you are saved!
- And don’t forget your only offensive weapon for this battle, this fight, your sword! God’s Word, the SWORD OF THE SPIRIT!
And don’t do it alone! We weren’t created to go it alone! That’s why God gave us one another! That’s why God gave us His Spirit so that He is always with Us. He will never leave us nor abandon us. Pray all the time! Trust Him for the little things and the big things because He cares for us!
Keep alert! Be prepared! Never give up! Pray always! Pray for all God’s people!
Love God! Love His Word! And as we finish today’s reading time from Psalm 119, we read…
97How I love your law! I think about it all day long.
98Your commandment is with me all the time and makes me wiser than my enemies.
99I understand more than all my teachers, because I meditate on your instructions.
100I have greater wisdom than those who are old, because I obey your commands.
101I have avoided all evil conduct, because I want to obey your word.
102I have not neglected your instructions, because you yourself are my teacher.
103How sweet is the taste of your instructions—sweeter even than honey!
104I gain wisdom from your laws, and so I hate all bad conduct.