Some things are provided for us: Truth, Righteousness, and the Gospel. Others we must do ourselves–with His help: Faith, [knowledge of] Salvation, and the Word. The oil/lubrication that makes all these work is Prayer.
8 The Lord detests the sacrifice of the wicked,
but the prayer of the upright pleases him.
God is much more interested in us having a relationship with Him than what we can do for Him. Does He really need us to do anything? It’s all designed for interaction. He invites us to join Him in what He is doing; we interact with Him during the project. We grow to be like Him and He receives glory!
The idea is to wed the two: Prayer plus Sacrifice. We interact with Him while serving Him. So, what does that look like? Let’s look at the opening statement. What is provided?
14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. Ephesians 6:14-15
- The Belt of Truth is what we know to be true. The Spirit has revealed to us His Plan, His Redemption, and His Interaction. What we get is synergy–the interaction of elements that when combined produce a total effect that is greater than the sum of the individual elements, contributions, etc.; synergism. This synergism is what is created when we interact with the LORD. It’s a NEW THING!
- The Breastplate of Righteousness is what He gave to us upon salvation. It’s the character of Christ and plays out in our lives as a desire to be like God, which is godliness. What is God like?
- He’s holy (He is set apart and special): we should see ourselves as holy, too.
- He’s fruit-bearing: This is my way of including all of the fruit of the Spirit; we aspire to be loving, joyful, peaceful, patient, kind, good, faithful, gentle, and exercise self-control (Galatians 5:22-23).
- The best attribute of God is that He is loving. In fact, the Bible says that HE IS LOVE (1 John 4:16) and that He loves us. His love and righteousness cover our hearts and protect us from the enemy’s lies.
- The Gospel of Peace is the Plan of God for salvation, transformation, and eventually glorification. We keep this plan before us all the time. It’s important. Anytime that we begin to doubt or to look around at what the world is doing, we need to go back to the Plan. It’s how we interpret all that is going on around us. We have several illustrations that give us hope concerning the Gospel:
- Daniel’s vision of the Rock that smashed the statue and then became a huge mountain that filled the whole earth (Daniel 2:31-35).
- The mustard seed (Mark 4:30-32).
- The river from under the throne of God that grows until all nations are blessed by it (Ezekiel 47:1-12).
- The yeast in the dough (Matthew 13:33).
Whether in good times or bad, we can count on the Gospel ever-increasing until it fills the entire earth! And we are a part of that Gospel!!!
So, be encouraged today. Join Him in Bible study and learn at His feet. Feel His love, joy and peace wash over you. Be energized by the promise of the Gospel. Now, go walk with Jesus!
Abba, I pray for my brothers and sisters that they would be Your willing ambassadors today. May they see You working and join You in Your work in people’s lives. May You equip us and whip us into shape for Your use and enjoyment. I want to be spiritually productive with You today, LORD. May I cooperate with Your Spirit! Amen.