For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared. Ephesians 6:15
Over the past year, I have learned the value of having good shoes. If you don't have the proper footgear when running, you can get shin splints, blisters, or even bone spurs. In Spartan Races (running plus obstacle races that only middle-aged adults enjoy), you have to have shoes that are able to give you traction over rocks, mud, and water so that you can finish the race. If you spend the majority of your day on your feet without comfortable shoes, you will be in pain the next day. Thinking about your footing is critical if you want to go through walking, running, and working without pain.
Paul equally knew the importance of having good footwear when it came to going in battle. He had observed soldiers who were a part of the Roman legion who had large cleats at the very bottom of their sandals so they could gain traction in warfare. He connects their sandals with the gospel of peace as a piece of armor that we need to put on daily. He knew that each of us would lose ground when Satan came and attacked our peace. We always say around our church that you are either going into a storm, in a storm, or coming out of a storm, because we know that the evil one wants to mess with our peace. It might be a call that comes in the middle of the night, test results from a doctor that aren't good, or a conversation that keeps replaying in our mind. We all go through seasons that seem to be a slippery slope towards destruction. This is why Paul encouraged the church to put on the gospel of peace so we could gain traction.
When I embrace the peace that is offered through the good news of Jesus Christ, it helps me to overcome anxiety, worries, and so much more. My confidence in what He did on the cross gives me hope that even in death, my eternal destiny is secure. No matter what this world or the Evil One throws at me, my hope remains in what Jesus did on the cross. This gives me the traction that I need to be fully prepared for battle. Where does your confidence come from?
We all face times where we feel like our feet are on a slippery slope. Take some time to think through and to journal about a time where you slipped and lost your footing in your faith. What were the circumstances around you wavering and wandering? What did it take to come to your senses? How does the gospel of peace help you to regain traction?What are some steps that you can take to avoid slipping in the future?Work through these questions and then spend some time praying that God will give you the strength to stand firm.
Read Colossians 1:15-23 (NLT)
Christ is the visible image of the invisible God. He existed before anything was created and is supreme over all creation,for through him God created everything in the heavenly realms and on earth.He made the things we can see and the things we can’t see—such as thrones, kingdoms, rulers, and authorities in the unseen world. Everything was created through him and for him.He existed before anything else, and he holds all creation together.Christ is also the head of the church, which is his body.He is the beginning, supreme over all who rise from the dead. So he is first in everything.For God in all his fullness was pleased to live in Christ,and through him God reconciled everything to himself.He made peace with everything in heaven and on earth by means of Christ’s blood on the cross.
This includes you who were once far away from God. You were his enemies, separated from him by your evil thoughts and actions. Yet now he has reconciled you to himself through the death of Christ in his physical body. As a result, he has brought you into his own presence, and you are holy and blameless as you stand before him without a single fault.
But you must continue to believe this truth and stand firmly in it. Don’t drift away from the assurance you received when you heard the Good News. The Good News has been preached all over the world, and I, Paul, have been appointed as God’s servant to proclaim it.
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