That particular day initiated an unplanned and unexpected shocking message no parent ever wants to hear. The family was a strong Christian family and members of a local church where one of my ministry board members, Gary Sears, pastors.
The young son of this family was on his way to church, where he worked in the children’s ministry, and he was near the time of his high school graduation. While driving, he suddenly hit a wet spot, spinning the car out of control and colliding into a tree. The physical injuries were serious, and the young man was rushed to the hospital with life-threatening injuries.
The reports looked bleak and hopeless. The doctor informed the mother that her son would be brain dead. Despite what she saw and heard, the mother of faith began writing healing scriptures, posting them in his room and on the marker board. She prayed, quoted Scripture, and began decreeing that her son would not be brain dead, but he would live and return to a normal life.
After some time one of her friends who worked in the medical field came to her and said, “I know you are believing and trusting for him to be healed and normal, but the reality is your son will never be the same, and if he comes through it, he will probably be a vegetable.”
Pastor Gary heard these words, and he observed and he observed her countenance and realized her faith level was dropping. That is when Gary said to the mother, “I know that what has been said to you has put a crack in your armor.” He then said, “I will stand over you and stand in the gap of that crack in your armor until you have the strength to get your faith back!”
The pastor then began to pray the same prayers and confess the same promises from Scripture for which the mother was believing and confessing. Eventually the mother regained her strength to believe and sealed the crack of doubt in her shield of faith. Today the same young man has graduated—not just from high school, but also from college with a degree and is working a job! The only evidence of his previous accident is a slight limp and a few minor things.
Have you experienced an unplanned and unexpected crack attack where the trial was so devastating that it weakened your confidence and faith? How many times during your lifetime have you ascended and stood tall on the hill of faith, believing for a good report, for a nearly impossible or life-threatening situation, but then you heard a negative report?
Resisting a good outcome or you saw a faith-killing circumstance with your eyes that dashed you from the height of believing to the abyss of despair, like a dreaded avalanche overtaking a skier on a snow-covered mountain?
Suddenly you are buried under the burden of doubt and the weight of: “What if it doesn’t happen?’ “What if it’s not God’s will?” “What if I believe and get the opposite?” “What if my prayer doesn’t get answered?” The what-ifs initiate a slow process of cracking your shield of faith, allowing the small darts of doubt, fear, or unbelief to enter your heart (Eph. 6:16).
The Almighty has provided believers a special God-gear—a spiritual armor often identified by scholars as the armor of God (Eph. 6:13-18). This battle gear equips the believer to enter a full range of battle conditions and engage the adversary, using offensive weapons to attack and numerous defensive weapons to protect one from various types of arrows. The success of this gear is dependent upon the believer’s knowledge of the weapons and insight into the numerous warfare strategy of the adversary. You must know how to defend yourself using the gear God has provided.
What many believers are not aware of is that, despite the strength and durability of God’s warfare gear, there are breaks, cracks, and weaknesses that can and do occasionally come, and we must know how to respond and “stand” with battered armor.
You may not see the armor with your natural eyes, just as Job did not see a “hedge” around him with his natural eyes (Job 10:10), but the adversary knows if you are fully clothed or partially naked, and he knows if you truly believe or if you are going to “fake it till you make it.”
As a soldier, you would never go to war without proper training, weapons, and protective gear. The Bible is our training guide; our life experiences and spiritual walk become our boot camp; and the temptations, trials, and attacks we face are all a part of the warfare. As a Christian engaged in spiritual conflicts, you must never leave home without your mind and heart covered and fully clothed with the warfare gear. Paul said, “Put on the whole armor” (Eph. 6:11). The armor of God—never leave home without it!
Prayer Power for the Week of July 7, 2014
This week, after the patriotic celebrations and enjoyment of friends, family, good food and fireworks settle down, take a few minutes to meditate on how God used a few brave souls to establish this nation for a great purpose back in 1776. Using a few believers seeking freedom to worship this nation went from a few colonies to one of the greatest superpowers in the world. It was established on Judeo-Christian principles and that has propelled and maintained it to this day. However, turning away from His statutes and failing to acknowledge Him in all our ways can lead to dire consequences, so this week we admonish all once again to follow the directive in 2 Chron. 7:14 to humble ourselves, turn from our wicked ways, and cry out to God to heal our land (1 Tim. 2:1-9; James 5:16; 2 Chron. 7:14).