I opened the door and let the dogs out at 6:30 a.m., the same as any other morning. As I was coming back into the house, however, I noticed through the living room window that the livestock were going berserk in the corral. At the same moment, the dogs went insane with their barking. Running to the glass, I saw a large black bear that our short-legged canine gal, which can slide under the corral fencing, had treed. The other three large dogs were barking and leaping against the corral rails.
Dashing outside, I hollered at the dogs to stand back, which they did. The bear immediately descended the tree and quickly scaled the fence, coming fully into our yard. Upon seeing this, the three largest dogs went into action.
Bonnie, the collie, positioned herself against my right leg in case the beast should have me in its sight, while Sophie and Denver moved in, one behind and one at the side of the bear, which they were then able to herd in the direction they wanted it to go. The two dogs hustled the creature down the fence and into a corner, always close and yet keeping just out of the bear's reach. Once they had it cornered, I called them back, leaving the bear room to make a choice — and he made the right one. Up and over the fence he went, across the corral, over the far rails, and off our property.
Wow! Was I ever impressed, as this was the first time that the dogs had been put to the test in a real live bear drama. I had often thought about it and hoped and prayed that they would react well if a real incident actually happened. Now that it had, they had responded superbly.
Similarly, we, too, as God's people must be alert to our enemy, the devil, who prowls around the corrals of our lives "like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour" (1 Peter 5:8b NIV)
When we do encounter him, in whatever form he chooses to take — false doctrine, persecution, war, immorality, and the like — God has given us spiritual weapons that we, too, might respond superbly. For as the apostle Paul has stated:
Ephesians 6:11-18 – Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints. (NIV)
The armour of God is ready and waiting for us. Let's take time to understand what each piece means, so that we might don it accordingly as the drama of this world unfolds around us, and so that we, too, might embrace the victory of light over darkness in His great and mighty power.
Prayer: Father God, help us to be alert to the unfolding drama of this world in which we live. Help us to be sober-minded, quick to hear and respond to Your voice at all times, and ready and able to put on the full armour that You have provided for us, that we, too, might respond superbly in our day of need. In Christ's name, we pray. Amen.
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