The question made me feel rather uncomfortable. It was one that required a lot of thought and reflection. The quick response would be too easy and flippant; like God was my genie in a bottle. However, this question never fails to force me to evaluate the strength of my prayer life. I understand how the depth of our prayer life is directly related to the armor of God. How To Wear Your Armor Like A Warrior Princess: Full Armor.
Last week, I said the sword was my last post in this series, but since then, I really felt the need to put it all together and wrap it up. like an amazing conclusion to an incredible important essay. I am always telling my kids that a strong conclusion brings their writing to a close and makes the reader feel comfortable with the writing, like a satisfaction of what they have just read. So, I need to practice what I preach, right? Let’s wrap this series up!
Prayer and Supplication
Speaking of conclusions, I don’t think it is coincidence that Paul ends his teaching of the armor of God with an exhortation to fervent prayer. He instructs us to pray always.
I did a little bit of digging with this verse using Blue Letter Bible. I was fascinated that the phrase “praying always with” also meant other phrases such as “opportune time”, “in season” and “in due time”. This tells me that our prayers ought to be purposeful. They should be relevant to what is happening in our lives. So, for example, we probably shouldn’t be praying for a raise in our job or a promotion if we aren’t doing something to work towards that raise or promotion. Another perfect example would be praying that you win the lottery. Really not a good idea. Our prayers ought to be pertinent to our lives as we walk closely with the Lord.
Supplications are our requests, the things we ask God for. We ought not just ask Him for whatever we want (yeah, a cool sports car would be lovely!). We need to ask in accordance with the Holy Spirit. I think we often forget this bit of extra requirement. Somehow, along the way, we have fallen for the lie that God will go ahead and give us anything we ask for. Hence the genie in a bottle idea. He will give us our hearts desires IF our hearts are lined up with His heart. He will bless us with whatever we need to fulfill His plan for our lives…not our own plans apart from Him. When we walk by the Spirit, we are free to ask for whatever we need. And our Father will be generous.
I looked up perseverance as well. Just read over these Biblical usage phrases and let them encourage your heart:
to adhere to one, be his adherent, to be devoted or constant to one
to be steadfastly attentive unto, to give unremitting care to a thing
to continue all the time in a place
to persevere and not to faint
to show one’s self-courageous for
to be in constant readiness for one, wait on constantly
Oh, sweet sister. Do you have the self-courage to put on the whole armor of God and persevere in battle through prayer? Are you ready to stand steadfastly with such care and love as to pray for someone or something without fail? I think you are more ready than you know.
Our Armor Give Us Courage To Pray
It is so important to have an active prayer life. 1 Chronicles offers such a beautiful picture.
To seek His face continually is one of my most wonderful thoughts. To seek His face brings reassurance and hope. I will seek His strength, for it is His armor that gives me courage and power. It is Jesus.
When I sense this reassurance, I grow more daring in my requests. I don’t want to leave my prayers as little requests – like I won’t catch that nasty cold or flu going around because it would inconvenience me. Yes, we still should pray for such things, BUT that shouldn’t be the pinnacle of our prayers. I want to continue to grow in my spiritual life so that God gets bigger.
This dialogue between Lucy and Aslan in Prince Caspian captures this idea well:
“Aslan”, said Lucy “you’re bigger”.
“That is because you are older, little one” answered he.
“Not because you are?”
“I am not. But every year you grow, you will find me bigger”.”
― C.S. Lewis, Prince Caspian
Do you understand this interaction? Aslan did not grow. He remains just as powerful as he has always been. It is Lucy who has grown in her walk. As she grows, she begins to comprehend just how powerful Aslan truly is. She has gotten to know him on a deeper level.
This is the same for us. When we are children, babes in the faith, our concept of God is very limited. But, as we grow in our trust of Him, we begin to see Him bigger and bigger. More and more powerful. Our faith grows. Our trust deepens. You know these women when you see them. You feel so in awe of their tremendous faith and joy. They have found Him ‘bigger’.
Prayer Holds It All Together
I don’t think I’d be far off if I said that prayer is what holds our armor together. It is through prayer that we fight our battles. Prayer deepens our understanding of truth. Our faith is built through prayer. We feel His peace when we commune with Him. It is through prayer that we become the righteousness of Christ. Our salvation comes when we offer our supplications to Him. And it is in prayer when we wield our swords by praying scripture. Prayer is our heavy artillery.
If you are anything like me, you may have wondered or questioned if you were wearing your armor. Really, how do you know? The idea can seem rather mystifying. What does a woman in full spiritual armor look like? Well, I think I might have figured it out. A woman in full armor is a woman who is a fervent prayer warrior.
How did I come to that conclusion? Well, we are supposed to wear our armor every day – it’s not like we get up and put on each piece like we do our pants and T-shirt. Really, we should never be taking off our armor.
The same goes with prayer. We should be praying without ceasing. This doesn’t mean we are kneeling on the floor 24/7. But I am sure that you have found yourself talking to Jesus while driving to the grocery store or washing the dishes. Along with devoted prayer time, this is praying without ceasing!
How about when you have prayed for the same thing over and over again for years? You are showing off that shiny armor, sister! You are praying without ceasing.
Maybe you have prayed a two-second prayer over your child as they went somewhere without you. Yup, you are donning your armor and praying fervently.
I am sure you could tell me countless times you have prayed for a backslidden friend or relative. That’s the breastplate of righteousness, Love.
I hope those examples have started you thinking about the idea of our armor and our prayer life being connected. Can you give some examples yourself? Share in the comments.
I am sure you are just dying to know what that crazy question was that I mentioned at the beginning. It went something like this: If God suddenly decided to answer all of the prayers you prayed last week, would you be disappointed or happy? I have mixed feelings about that. I have a strong prayer life, but it could always be stronger!!
I have mixed feelings about that. I would be thrilled about all of those people and things I had been praying about. But I’d be incredibly sad about what I hadn’t prayed about – especially the people and thingsI purposely chose to not pray for. I’d be sad that I hadn’t prayed ‘bigger’. That I didn’t have the courage to pray for the impossible. What about you? How would you feel? How does that question force you to re-evaluate your own prayer life?
If you are looking for a resource to help you in your prayer life, my friend, Arabah Joy, has a prayer journal that is lovely. I use this resource myself in my own prayer life and it has been such a blessing. Head on over to her site to see more info and to purchase: Praying the Promises of the Cross.
I’ve also written a popular prayer journal post that has several free resources.
The printable I made for my armor of God series, showing that Jesus is our armor.