Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Thinking About This Passage -

A friend of mine emailed it to me on Sunday:

Ephesians 6:10 - 16

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. 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.

The sames verses, Message version:

And that about wraps it up. God is strong, and he wants you strong. So take everything He 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 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.

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.

Coincidentally, the sermon at Clint's church (hahaha. Like it's "his" church...) was also about prayer, and Tim, the pastor whose turn it was to speak on Sunday, gave this great illustration of what prayer is:

So, Tim and his wife, see, have 3 daughters. And when his girls were little they lived in Vancouver near Cambie St and, say, West 15th Ave. (I can't remember for sure, but for the locals who are reading this, they lived near the City Hall. Or, Hotel DeVille in French. And I know that because I was in Quebec, where City Hall are called Hotel DeVilles.) ANYways... as a fun family outing, they would ride their respective bikes down the hill to Granville Island for a look-see.

After they had their fill of fun and ice-cream, they would head across some street and start their treck up Yukon(?) to get back home, at the top of the hill. Tim mentioned that he was (is?) a strappin' hockey player with a very conditioned body, so the hill ahead was not daunting. However, his 5, 7 and 8 year old daughters on their pretty pink princess 2 wheelers, pimped out with stickers and pom poms were not as enthusiastic about the task ahead.

The first time they had ever done this bike trip, he positioned his bike right alongside his youngest daughter's Barbie two-wheeler and with his left hand on his own handle bar, he leaned over and grasped the centre of her handle bar and giving his thighs a tremendous work out - he pedalled them both to the top of the hill.

And everytime after that, his daughters would say to him, when they faced the giant hill, "Daddy, can you do that thing that you do? Can you get us to the top of the hill?"

"And, that? Is the best description of prayer that I can think of. That ride? Is exhilarating. For my daughters. They could have not gotten to the destination without the power of my legs getting them there. They trust me implicitly. They don't try and steer me to go back down the hill. Or move off the hill and onto a side street. They know I love them and will get them home."

There are some hills we are called to climb. And there's no way we are going to get to the top, even if we pedal with all our might on our little princess bikes. And God? Who loves us and chose the itinerary for the trip, is riding alongside us on the journey, enjoying the scenery and our company, and is waiting for us to say, "Hey, God? Please? Can You do that thing that You do? I need Your power, because I can't do this on my own."


Someone I love is in Peru, probably facing some hills on this trip. They've had a few roadblocks, from equipment issues to illness and when I read the verses above, the phrases, "You're up against far more than you can handle on your own" and " prayer is essential. Pray hard and long. Pray for your brothers and sisters ..." I thought I'd ask any members of my extended family that are reading this to pray for Clint while he's in Peru til the 21st.

If you're not related to me, you can pray too, if you want. But it feels weird asking strangers to pray for someone they've never met.

Three things I'm thankful for:

1. Val dropped over 2 seconds after I got home from work and brought me a delicious lump of dough with potato and ham in it. And then we visited for, uh, 3 hours. And I never made dinner. Or even offered her a glass of water or tea. Because I'm stupid that way. Glad she still loves me even if I'm a putz.

2. I've got a cleaning lady lined up to spend 2 hours in my kitchen/family room. I can hardly wait.

3. I get Friday off. I am free to spend the day with Drew who has a Pro D day on Friday. I am giddy.


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