It’s Your Choice You Get to Decide

God has been using me to share His message of love, hope, and grace. I do a talk on the armor of God based on the scripture found in Ephesians 6:10-17. 
“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, 
so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 
For our 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. 
Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, 
you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, 
to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, 
with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 
and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 
In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith,
 with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.
 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.”
I actually put on the full armor of God, but it is not your typical armor. When I get it all on I look kind of silly, but I hope it is a message that will resonate in the ears of those who hear it and will remember to put on the full armor of God all day every day. I am at the age where if you want to remember something you pin it with something you can remember. If they remember how silly I look then hopefully it will jar their memory on the armor of God. 
I have a close friend who knows I do the talk and she let me borrow this wonderful book by David Jeremiah entitled, “Answers to Questions About Spiritual Warfare.” It is an awesome book.  I encourage you to purchase a copy, In one of the chapters he brought out a very important point and I have incorporated it into my talk. 
The armor is there for the soldier to put it on when he goes into battle. This is a tool that will help him as he fights off his enemy. I suspect when the armor was given out it was highly suggested they put on the armor before going into battle. They may have even been ordered or forced to put on the armor before heading out. 
We know that when David was heading out to fight Goliath he was given Saul’s armor to put on. “Then Saul dressed David in his own tunic. He put a coat of armor on him and a bronze helmet on his head. David fastened on his sword over the tunic and tried walking around, because he was not used to them. “I cannot go in these,” he said to Saul, “because I am not used to them.” So he took them off. 1 Samuel 17”38-40. David was given the chance to wear the armor but chose not to. Because David trusted God and because it was God’s will we all know Goliath was killed and David went on to be a hero. 
The point I want to make is this: God gives us tools to use. He has given us his armor to put on, but it’s up to us to choose whether we wear it or not. He does not force us to wear it or to use it daily. It’s a chose we get to make. He has given us free will. If he forced himself on us Eve might not have eaten the apple, but God gave her free will to choose and to make choices. He wants us to make wise choices and to seek his guidance when we do have choices to make. David chose not to and it turned out well for him, but I am not sure I am willing to take that chance unless God directs me to. 
Every morning we have the opportunity to get up, pray and ask God to help us with the choices we make and to help us have the right attitude and to create a clean and right spirit within us. We also have the opportunity to put on the armor of God as we are dressing preparing for the day. We can choose to mentally put on the armor or we can be in such a hurry we don’t take the time to do it. It’s our choice. 
There are two parts to my talk. During the second part I share with the group how one day I was too smug and didn’t really want to put it on. I have in the past and sometimes I still do choose not to put on the full armor of God. Those days I come home from a busy day and I feel defeated, lost and bummed out. Satan often attacks at those very times. Just like a soldier is vulnerable when he does not wear his armor in battle we become vulnerable to Satan’s attacks. Just as the soldier prepares for his battle we too must prepare for the battles we face every day, but again it’s a choice we have to make. I have to choose everyday whether I will go out in my own strength or I will go out in God’s armor prepared to fight whatever comes my way. 
I end my talk with a reminder of Helen Reddy’s song. In the chorus she sings, I am woman, I am strong and I am invincible, well I am here to tell you I am woman, I am not strong and I am not invincible. I am only strong when I have the armor of God on and I am only invincible when God is walking beside me, under me, over me and around me. 
Who will you choose this day? Will you go on your own strength and fight your own battles or will you choose to use the tools God has given each of us and put on the full armor of God each and every morning? Free will, choices, and decisions we get to make.
Join God’s army and together let us put on the armor and fight the battles together. When we stand together and fight together battles are won and the enemy loses. Join me today won’t you?
Dear Awesome God: Thank you for an awesome weekend and for the chance to share your message. May the women who heard the message you gave me don the armor of God and win the battles that they face every day. May those who read this choose to put on the full armor and prepare for the battle of everyday living, tough situations and tough choices. Help us to know we can’t do this alone and that we don’t have to. Thank you for giving us tools to use. Help us to make the right decision and to put those tools on every day. We know we are only strong and we can only win those battles that are before us when we are equipped with the tools you have given us. Amen

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