Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Armed and Ready

Over the summer I had the chance to work once again at Bair Lake Bible Camp as member of the senior staff. It was amazing. The fellowship, the teaching, the worship, the work, everything about it I loved. It was tough though, I had to work through some things that were definitely of spiritual nature. Feelings of not being good enough to work there, that I shouldn't be there, that the things I held closest were going to fall away. It was . . . ridiculous for me to think those things, because they didn't have any solid base on them. It was all lies that were trying to get me to fail and to give up so I couldn't do what I was there to do.

It was the best summer ever.

I grew so much closer to my LORD, I grew in my knowledge of a basic concept that we often forget, I grew closer to Danielle (and she was hours away!), I made a stand and fought for the right things, and most of all I was able to take up the armor of God in the way it was meant to be taken up. And that is probably the biggest thing that changed in me this summer, I figured out how to really use that armor to the fullest capabilities.

I wanted to touch that today, to explain that in my life now. First off I'll start at the top and work down. Ephesians 6:10-18 talks about the armor of God in all of it's components. I'll start with the Helmet of salvation which has been a huge help to me because it keeps reminding me that I have been given salvation, that the price was paid by someone that was capable of paying it because I am not. It reminds me that I need to be humble in my thinking about myself, yet realizing at the same time that I'm truly worth something because of what Christ has achieved in me.
Secondly the breast plate of righteous ness. It's so cool to hear that this isn't putting on our own righteous ness but Christ's it's getting up everyday and doing everything we can to be more like Christ. It helps steer us from sin, as well as keep sus honest about how we are meant to live.
The Belt of truth as easy for me, the truth is something I hope I never go away from in my teaching. Truth is truth, no matter what. There are certain truthes that are fought against today, but that doesn't mean they are not true, it just means that people are blind to them. I learned that "Truth" Is more than scriptures. It's also the things that are true, I'm saved, I'm a beloved child of God, I'm a servant, and even a Saint for the LORD. Things that Cannot be taken away from me. Truth, is what I long to hold on to.
The shield of faith was huge for me, knowing that it is truly the community of believers coming together and protecting each other. It's the ability to withstand peril and the devil because you have people around you pushing you to be better, and filling in the holes where you can't. It's having a church family, a set of people around you to lift you up in prayer to the LORD.
The sword of the Spirit. Ahh! what an amazing defensive weapon we have. We have the ability to pull scripture out every time we get tempted, and every time we can feel the Devil trying to get at us. As Josh Put it, when the devil has us by our throats we can take out our small sword and put it through his side and win the battle. It's amazing to think, but honestly it's worked!! So often since being home I've had scripture pop into my head that has helped me stay pure and think Holy things, or think about God instead of myself. It's incrediably powerful
Last but certainly not least. The Shoes of the Preparation of the Gospel of Peace. The thing that I most took away is that the Gospel is not merely for people who don't know God. It's for us too. I used the analagy of chains, for the person who does not know God, the Gospel releases those chains to sin and sets him free. For me, the believer, the Gospel reminds me that I was released, but also and more importantly that I'm in process of being healed by the grace of God. That the wounds that were left behind by the chains will fade, the affects may always be there, and there will be scars, but I won't have to go through life with that Pain because Christ has taken it away.

This one's long, I apologize but It's a good one I believe.

God Bless.

OH and for you guys too, read Isaiah 57, it talks about Jesus putting on his armour. . . soooo Cool!

Thursday, August 13, 2009


Even while I was at camp this summer I had some doubts running through my mind and they bothered me the entire time that I was there. They would battle back into my mind each and every time I though that I had them Subdued. It was incredibly difficult to go about the work that I had to do while I was at camp with those doubts in my head. Doubts about God's love, about my career path, about Danielle, about friends and school. Stupid things that I had once turned over to the Lord to Handle, yet it appears at some point that I came and took them back.

It came to me that I never truly gave them over to the Lord, I just put them there at the foot of the cross and walked away. That's the problem, I never handed them to the Lord, I never let Him take them and toss them away, to separate them from me completely. And then to make matters worse I walked away from the Cross, not to say I walked away from the Lord, but I took my eyes away from the Cross, and therefore away from the Strength that it gives me. It was crazy hard to go through this summer with that attitude. Granted I did it, but only through a great many prayers, and through the uplifting of others.

I had stopped searching for God in the Word, I was praying and expecting answers without actually seeking them out. Jeremiah 33:3 talks about God revealing secrets to us, and John 15:16 talks about how God will grant us what we wish so long as it is in accordance to His will. But when I'm asking questions, and He has this great book in front of me, and I don't go to it for answers, that is truly foolishness. Proverbs 3:5-6 is almost cliche in our culture but the words ring truer for me than ever, "trust in the Lord with all your heart" something I've done in the aspect of eternity, but not so much as in everyday. Yes somedays I throw myself before the Lord and trust him completely but others, I try to do it on my own.

Isaiah 40:29-31 is great because it again reiterates the point that it is those who trust in the LORD that will persevere. Those who don't look to the Lord for strength and don't trust him still to deliver on that are going to grow weary and fall. It's awesome to see that it's promised to us that we will succeed in Christ. Romans 8:37 in the NLT phrases it as "overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us." How sweet is that!!

To finish, I came home and was crazy discouraged on Saturday. I just felt deserted that I was on my own and that I didn't matter. Then Sunday morning the sermon was from Psalm 91. It saved my mind. Read it. Get into it. Hide it in your heart, use it as a sword to defeat the devil when he is close enough that you can smell his breath.


Dare to Love, and Don't Look Back!