Saturday, January 31, 2009
Prayer as a Weapon
The last piece of equipment for the successful soldier, and the second offensive weapon, is prayer. It's our only means to communicate with our commander-in-chief. Prayer is the means by which we put on the armor. Prayer is also the power that makes the armor work. Paul states that the Lord wants us to be "praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit" (Ephesians 6:18). Complete knowledge of the enemy and using the best of equipment have no value unless the soldier possesses the energy necessary to face the enemy and use the equipment. Prayer keeps us connected to God's power. People who drift away from God are never prayer warriors. In that sense, the armor offers no help to us unless we are living in a growing love relationship with Jesus Christ. Only as we walk in fellowship with Him do we receive strength and power from Him. Our prayer lives to a large extent define our Christian lives. A good case of this was Joey. He was plagued with anxiety about his two children. He was age thirty-two and worried constantly that one of them would be badly hurt or die. Only two years earlier, he had lost his only other son in an auto accident. After the death of this three-year-old, Joey's concern for his children became an obsession. The fact that one of his children had died two years earlier stoked his concern and turned it in an obsession. As Joey and I prayed together, the Lord brought to his mind the fact that he was believing a lie. The enemy's lie was "God really doesn't care for your son and daughter like you do. If you don't constantly have them in mind and worry about them, one of them might die again, or be severely injured-and it will be all your fault." When that lie was exposed. Joey's mind exploded with affirming Scriptures, such as "The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?" (Psalm 27:1). Joey thought about another compelling verse: "Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God" (Philippians 4:6). Joey knew these verses applied to his children as well as himself. He realized that he had not been taking to his Father in prayer the need of his children's safety. I reminded him that God, who created them, loves Joey's children-loves them so much that He could not take His eyes off them. Later Joey told me, "That day my life changed. I saw that through prayer I could take my children to the Lord and He would keep them safe in His arms. Each morning I rededicated my two children to the Lord, I asked Him to place a hedge of protection around them, and I have learned to trust Him in a whole new way. Since that day in your office, my anxiety is gone. My children truly belong to the Lord. "Through prayer I'm constantly reminded of this truth that God loves my children." He added. "My wife and I try to be wise stewards of these precious lives the Lord has trusted us with. But thanks to God; He is their protection." Author and speaker Warren Wiersbe has reminded Christians of the importance of wearing all the armor. Concerning the when and how of putting on the Christian armor, he wrote, "My own experience has been that the morning is the best time to put on the armor. After I have given God my body, mind, and will, I ask the Holy Spirit to fill me, and then I, by faith, put on the pieces of the armor by prayer." The Strategy of Satan, 1985. I cannot think of a better pattern to follow. Dr. Ken Copley is available for counseling, conferences, and local church meetings.