As we engage in warfare in the heavenly realms (while still having to do so in a flesh frame), there could easily be a disadvantage on our end. We cannot see our enemy! Come to think of it, we cannot see our Commander either! So how do we handle all this? By faith.
"Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen."
As the familiar verse above states, faith is what we believe made tangible. It is touching what we hope for with our hearts. So what does faith have to do with our armor and warfare? It is what we hide behind as we march forward.
Ephesians 6 states (after listing the belt, breastplate and shoes we are to put on) to "above all" take up the shield of faith, so that we can extinguish the enemy's flaming arrows. That is so cool to me. We don't have to be burned by the enemy, even though he shoots at us relentlessly. Faith is a fire extinguisher.
So let's bring this to real-life terminology, hopefully seeing it as truly applicable. I struggle with back pain on a pretty consistent basis. Arrows fly toward me that maybe God doesn't want to heal me completely this side of eternity. Doubting the Scripture that says that by His stripes I am healed causes the shield to be lowered, opening me up to an onslaught of archery attacks. Letting faith take a backseat has a dangerous domino effect.
But...if I maintain a constant grip on the shield that He has given me by filling myself with the Word, I remember that faith is not based on what I see or how I feel. I live by the truth that I know, not by the lie that seems prevalent at the time. The truth says that I am healed, regardless of whether my body has gotten the memo yet or not.
We walk by faith, not by sight. I urge you to stay in the Word, causing your shield to grow and be strengthened. I encourage you to stop believing the arrows and choose to believe the One who gave you the shield. Yes, there is an invisible enemy taking aim on a regular basis, but we serve an invisible God who fights for us every time. I choose to believe Him...not the arrows.
Father, I don't want to live by what is visible. I realize that what is unseen is eternal, and what is seen is temporary. Don't let me move forward dragging the shield of faith behind me. Help me to raise it, so that truly no weapon formed against me has any power. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
2 Corinthians 5:7