We live in a fallen world where bad things happen on a regular basis. It often feels like things are going from bad to worse. I remember as a child, asking mom if she was ever scared as a little girl to walk the blocks to school. She replied that when she was a little girl, no one worried about stuff like that. She remembers being gone from home for hours and hours, playing with kids in her neighborhood. Her parents had no idea where she was, but they never worried. As young as I am, I remember a simpler time in America where terrorism was something people in Europe had to deal with....but America was safe.
The sad but sobering reality is that no one is safe. We never have been: 1 Peter 5:8 “Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.” Satan has been looking for ways to destroy our joy and our lives for a long time. Complacency was his tool in the 20th century. He gave us money and “safety”, hoping that we would forget that we are in a spiritual battle every day: “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.” Here in the 21st century, Satan wants to scare you into retreating from public life. He wants us to hole up in our houses and keep to ourselves. How then should we respond? To quote a title of a Frank Peretti novel: How do we combat This Present Darkness? By putting on God’s Armor. If you have a relationship with Jesus, you have been: “...sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of His glory” (Ephesians 1:13b-14). Satan can take my life, but he cannot have my soul (John 10:28).
To put on His armor is to trust Him daily to provide what you need and take care of you for an eternity. It is to daily make a decision to put on the various pieces of armor listed in Ephesians 6:10-20. I am thankful for our law enforcement officers, first responders, military, and our veterans! However, I know that evil can still strike at any time. The best defense is knowing where you will spend eternity. 2 Corinthians 13:5 tells us to examine our hearts regularly. Do I see Jesus in my life? Do I see the fruit of the Holy Spirit? Am I a different person than before I accepted Christ? The only sure thing in this world, is Jesus. He is faithful. I know as a follower of Jesus Christ that anything He lets me endure, is for my good: And we know that for those who love God, all things work together for good, for those who are called according to His purpose.