Do you know any veterans? Today is Veteran’s Day and I can’t help but think of my friend, Josh Taylor, who is now back in the states in college in Mississippi, but a year ago he was in Iraq fighting the war on terror. The newspaper had several articles about the men and women who protect our country in honor of Veteran’s Day. I read where an elementary school adopted a soldier who once attended their school. The principal said she wanted to build a connection with the students and what was really happening in the world. They had done a poll asking children if the United States was at war and many of the students answered it was not. She was saddened by their lack of understanding.
As Christians, we are also in a war, but it is the war that will not end until Jesus returns. It is a daily part of our lives, but I am afraid many Christians, like the elementary students at Frey, do not realize they are at war. You can’t take ground if you don’t even know you’re supposed to be fighting. Ephesians 6:12 tells us we’re not “your 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.” God doesn’t just leave us as sitting ducks. He has a plan for us. First, we are to put on the full armor of God [Ephesians 6:13-18].
Did you notice we were to dress for war but our biggest course of action we were directed to take was prayer [vs. 18]. Paul didn’t view prayer as an afterthought. It is plan A. So many times when someone hears of a crisis, they ask “What else can I do for you besides just prayer?” Prayer is the most powerful thing you can do for anyone. It should be the first thing, the last thing, and the in the midst of crisis thing we go to for ourselves and others. Prayer is where we battle best.
Another thing stands out to me in this description of the armor we’re to put on…there is no covering for the back. Have you ever thought about it? The armor Paul describes in this passage is very similar to the Roman armor worn in that day. They did not wear a back covering because they would fight back to back with another soldier, fending off any attack. They worked together for the betterment of one another. It is where the phrase “I’ve got your back” is thought to come from and it is a picture for us as Christians. We should have one another’s back in prayer as we walk through crisis. We don’t want to leave any exposed areas where the enemy can come in and secure victory, so we are to pray for one another.
If you know a veteran, take time to thank them today for their service to our country. If you have a friend in Christ, take time to thank them also for being a fellow soldier in the battle with you.