I sat in her living room full of women, ready to bolt out the door. I just wanted to run out of that house and get home where my heart wouldn’t be vulnerable. Something was stirring; a battle was going on in another realm. This battle was for my heart. My dying heart. And I had a choice. I had failed to understand the importance of wearing my armor over the course of my youth and young adulthood. The ramifications were deadly; the result was a heart afraid to living in freedom. My breastplate was rusty and in need of serious repair. I needed to know how to be a warrior princess. How to Wear Your Armor Like A Warrior Princess: Your Breastplate.
The purpose of the breastplate for the Roman Soldier was to protect the delicate vital organs in the chest. Like all pieces of armor, the breastplate had to be in good repair. In order to keep his armor in pristine condition, a soldier would care for it each and every day. He would rub oil into the skin, making it strong and durable so it wouldn’t crack. He would sharpen his sword and check to be sure everything was in order. Not doing this every day could very well result in weakened armor, damaged areas and an ill-prepared soldier. Any weak areas needed to be strengthened and repaired – daily.
The breastplate had to be securely fastened to the belt so the organs wouldn’t be exposed to attack. A malicious enemy would be watching for any opportune time for a lethal strike. A weak, damaged or out of place breastplate would provide a strategic assault on even the most skilled soldier. He would be easy prey for an enemy.
Our Spiritual Breastplate
Armor care is no different for us. We require a strong breastplate for battle; our breastplate protects our hearts and other vital organs.
Just like the Roman soldier, we must be checking over our armor on a daily basis, ensuring there are no weak areas in our lives. Because if there is a weak area, you can bet our enemy will take notice and he will not spare any opportunity for a full on assault. If there is an advantage, he will more than gladly take it.
In order for us to keep our armor in good repair, we need to be in the Word daily – meditating on His promises. I know, some days it is tough to open our Bibles and read a verse let alone actually study it. Especially when the kids are little and they constantly require our attention. However, we can get God’s truth into us through worship music, listen to something on audio – some of the best times God has spoken to my heart has been through something a DJ said on KLove radio. Have a verse on your fridge – or a few. There are so many ways to get His Word into our minds and into our hearts.
We also need to keep a heart of prayer. Have you ever baked something and found yourself just chatting with God? Or maybe you have been working out and said a prayer – even if it is for help to finish of those last few reps!
Any sin in our lives will weaken our armor significantly. Asking God to search our hearts and make them clean will help us to deal with sin and dig up the root of it. This requires honesty with ourselves – not always a pleasant experience. And let’s face it, there are times that we enjoy sitting in our sin, unwilling to give it up. But in order to keep ourselves protected from the attacks of the enemy – and he will attack – then we must remove any and all sin. Thus the name “Breastplate of righteousness“.
If we aren’t wearing our breastplate when the enemy attacks, the result is usually fatal – our hearts can be destroyed. The protection of our hearts is essential for our survival, it is the wellspring of life, after all.
Are you wearing and caring for your breastplate of righteousness? This breastplate isn’t our righteousness; it is the righteousness of Christ. Become confident in His righteousness.
In the difficult seasons of life, our enemy loves to plant seeds of doubt. He reminds us of our past sin and the ways in which we have failed God and others. Growing in confidence in Christ’s righteousness in the warmer seasons will help us trust and rest in His righteousness in the dreary seasons.
Do you strive to be perfect? Are you caught up in your works for your righteousness? We must always remind ourselves that our righteousness does not come from us. It comes from Christ and Him alone. And that truth helps us to live in freedom.
Striving keeps us in bondage; living in His righteousness frees us.
Striving condemns us when we mess up. His righteousness allows us to approach the throne of grace as many times as we need.
Our exhausting efforts say we will never be good enough. His righteousness says He is more than enough for us and His righteousness is all we need.
When everything in my screamed “RUN!“, I chose to stay with those ladies. I chose to stay for the study. That was so hard. It was hard because there was a battle for my heart. The enemy had pierced it and had laid claim – a false claim – but a claim nonetheless. He wasn’t about to give up the ground he had won in my heart without a huge fight. I think back on that day now and I wonder…did he know what I’d become once God breathed life back into my heart? Did he know that everything he had done to try and destroy me would be turned around and used to being glory to the Most High? Did he know that the devastation and destruction he flogged me with at such a young and tender age would be used to win souls for the Kingdom? I think he had somewhat of an idea of what would happen. He knows what God does with brokenness – crushed hearts. He knows the Redeemer. He knows that God can make gold out of the rustiest piece of tin. He knows this probably much more than we do! So, yes, he knew who I might become if I stayed. And he was afraid. Maybe he didn’t know all of the details…I don’t think he did…but he knew something major would happen if he lost. And he did lose…big time.
Last week, I introduced a pattern for our armor. Let’s add to it today:
Jesus is our Truth; He is our belt.
Jesus is our faith, He is our shield.
Jesus is our peace, He is our shoes.
Jesus is our righteousness, He is our breastplate.
Don’t you just love that? It is all Him! We still have the helmet and the sword to go through. I plan to make a free printable for you that shows how Jesus is our armor. Please come back to get it in a couple of weeks!
How about you? Are you ready to put your breastplate back on? Are you ready to put your armor to work? Are you ready to put on His righteousness?