This time of year the mornings are a bit darker. I make note of the spiders beginning webs on my evening walk with the dogs. My hope is to duck each web on the morning walk. I cannot stand the feeling that follows when you walk through a spider web. Instantly you become a ninja warrior, arms flailing in all directions trying to remove the sticky, gross web. Then you feel like something has to be crawling on you somewhere so you continue to move your hands and arms to search. Minutes later you are still feeling on edge. What if there is a spider on me? Do you see a spider on me?
Some mornings I underestimate the spider. I think by ducking a certain amount or by moving in a certain direction that I will miss the web. That spider won’t get me. But I am wrong. The spider’s web was bigger than imagined. Then the “definitely not a black belt” part of me takes action. Sadly, we also many times underestimate the devil. Flailing arms do no good when that happens.
In Genesis, we are told that the serpent was “MORE CRAFTY than any other beast of the field that the LORD God had made” (3:1 ESV). Now if the devil is more crafty than all others, it is therefore important that we protect ourselves and put on our full armor of God. We cannot duck and dodge. We need to be armored up—protected with each piece of armor. One piece won’t work. A few pieces won’t cover us. We need to be fully armored. Today, armor up. Tomorrow, armor up. Each day, armor up.
“And that about wraps it up. God is strong, and he wants you strong. So take everything the Master has set out for you, well-made weapons of the best materials. And put them to use so you will be able to stand up to everything the Devil throws your way. This is no afternoon athletic contest that we’ll walk away from and forget about in a couple of hours. This is for keeps, a life-or-death fight to the finish against the Devil and all his angels. Be prepared. You’re up against far more than you can handle on your own. Take all the help you can get, every weapon God has issued, so that when it’s all over but the shouting you’ll still be on your feet. Truth, righteousness, peace, faith, and salvation are more than words. Learn how to apply them. You’ll need them throughout your life. God’s Word is an indispensable weapon. In the same way, prayer is essential in this ongoing warfare. Pray hard and long. Pray for your brothers and sisters. Keep your eyes open. Keep each other’s spirits up so that no one falls behind or drops out.” – Ephesians 6:10-18 [MSG]
Children are a great part of our future. I read a story I want to share with you. It is actually about a professor who is at Southwestern Seminary. When he was 5 years old, his family was not well off. They barely had the money to make it and he didn’t have any shoes. His mother thought it was very important to pray– she understood the value of prayer.
When she sent her son to the store, she gave him the grocery list. HE didn’t have shoes to wear on his feet to go to the store. His mother said, “I’m sorry, but I don’t have the money to buy you shoes.” She told him that they should pray to God and ask Him to provide and He will provide, and so they prayed.
He went to the store and handed the man behind the counter the grocery list. The man looked at the list and then looked at the boy’s feet. He asked the boy why he didn’t have any shoes on his feet and the boy told him that they did not have the money for shoes.
The grocer packed up the list of groceries, wrote a note, and stuck everything into a bag. The boy proceeded home and gave his mother the groceries. When his mother was going through the items, she noticed the note that the man left, along with money for her to purchase the boy a pair of shoes.
Luke 11:9-10 says, “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives; and he who seeks, finds; and to him who knocks, it will be opened.”
There is great power in prayer. As James wrote, “an effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much.” Never doubt for a moment if God can hear your prayers or not. He hears each one of them and He answers each one of them.
As this little boy found out, God heard him and his mother praying for those shoes and God provided. This story shows the importance not only of sharing the power of prayer with young ones around us, but also in remembering the great power that prayer can have in our lives.