The Helmet and Sword
Growing up, my brother and I loved playing dress up. The costumes and jumpsuits morphed over the years from firemen and princesses to cowboys and Star Wars characters. Though, our masks/helmets and weapons always remained most important. We did our best to hold tight to these parts of our armor. Still when the sword was slayed or my mask went missing, I panicked, feeling exposed and helpless.
Very much like our childhood games, no positive outcome is produced when we try to fight the enemy in the war for our souls without all the necessary tools and weapons.
So today we are going to look at the essentials of the helmet and sword found in Ephesians 6:17.
“Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.”
- Helmet of Salvation
The first command refers to this helmet of salvation and implies the need to protect our heads or mind. I believe this is because our brains are like switchboards and basically responsible for nearly every action and reaction, thought and blink when it comes to the mechanics of our bodies and everyday functioning.
Therefore, our salvation story, or how Jesus saved us by dying for our sins on the cross, must be at the forefront of our worlds and minds.
Rather than always being afraid that someone will ask about your testimony as I used to, resulting in silence for nearly two decades, I have found that actually PRACTICING out loud whether to a friend, parent or even to the mirror, can be so beneficial.
The gospel was not intended to be complicated and we know about our personal journeys because we have LIVED them.
Still, it can seem so overwhelming. So, it helps to figure out a game plan by picking out the highlights.
For me, it was also important to consider various audiences for my choice of words and examples I share with a 9 year old may be quite different than a 59 year old.
Of course, you cannot rehearse every possible situation. But, writing or planning a general idea on a piece of paper or note card then rehearsing it again and again can be so helpful and also build your confidence for when the time comes.
I also recommend thinking about salvation and your personal testimony as a tool.
It is not only for those speaking from a pulpit or TV, a podcast or another grandiose scene.
As believers, we are all called to “work out our salvation by LIVING it and LOOKING for examples to share His love and grace each and every day with our friends, students, the person making our coffee in the drive through line, our nurse at the hospital, the police officer we pass on our way to work, and absolutely everywhere in between.
This centering on salvation also keeps our priorities in line so the things of this world don’t take over our mind which directly ties to our second weapon today.
- The Sword which is WORD of GOD
The second part of this verse equips us with another tool and resource able to help us answer all life’s questions and problems we face.
By taking time to read, study, and memorize TRUTH, we will have an unshakable foundation that will not fade or fall no matter what the world throws at us.
I again want to mention it is not enough to rely on listening to sermons/podcasts or reading books and get information “second-hand”. This is beneficial and community is crucial. Although we will remain stunted in our growth if we don’t dive into His Word and allow Him to speak to us personally. Even if it is only 5 minutes, you will be amazed at how much you can learn and grow from.
We will also find that the way in which the Lord speaks to each one of us is unique. He may whisper to me in a song, while for you it may be during your workout or run.
Therefore, as we wrap up this week and verse 17, I pray you will see the importance of incorporating both the helmet and the sword in your day to day journey.
If you already know Jesus, think about how you can practice sharing your story of how He came into your life, as well as creating space to meditate on God’s Word everyday so you are ready to fight the battles coming your way.
Although, if you do not know Jesus personally or are tired of fighting without weapons or only in your own strength, today can be your day. Please feel free to reach out to me, a local pastor or even a friend who knows Jesus so we can celebrate with you and join you on your journey!!
You are never alone and I am praying for you always.
Much love, Alisha