Shields Which Protect

January 18, 2019
by Joel Jongkind

Psalm 84:11a – For the Lord God is a sun and shield. (NKJV)

For about ten years, in both eyes, I have had glaucoma, a disease which increases pressure in the eye, and which, if left untreated, can cause total blindness. Mine was kept under control with eye drops at bedtime every day. However, a year or so ago, my left eye did not react to the daily drops any more. A laser treatment was done, and for a while, it was under control. However, after some time, the pressure started to build up again. More drops of a different kind were prescribed, to be put in seven times per day. However, in September, it was considered to be uncontrollable, and it was decided that I should have a trabeculectomy, a surgical operation which lowers the pressure inside the eye by making a small hole in the eye wall (sclera), covered by a thin trap door.

After the operation, I had a somewhat painful, scratchy feeling in my eye, but I was not to rub it under any circumstance, because it would irritate and possibly damage the incision. During the day, I would be able to stop myself from doing this. However, at night, there would be the likelihood that I would unknowingly rub my eye and cause damage. To protect my eye, I was given a domed plastic shield to be taped over my eye while asleep. During the day, I was always to wear my glasses or sunglasses. I had to protect my eye at all times.

There are also occasions when our faith lives are in danger of being damaged by outside influences. There are temptations of all kinds for all of us, but we have God's Word to protect us in times of danger. In his letter to the Ephesians, Paul tells them and us how to protect ourselves:

Ephesians 6:11-16 – Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. (NKJV)

It is so great to know that we can always be protected by the shield of faith. We can reliably trust in the promises of God's Word, for example, that "all things work together for good to those who love God" (Romans 8:28a NKJV) and that we "can do all things through Christ who strengthens [us]" (Philippians 4:13 NKJV).

Prayer: Our Father in heaven, in those times when we are tempted to do things which we know are not right, we thank You that You will protect us when we wander away from You. We thank You, in Jesus' name. Amen.

About the author:

Joel Jongkind <austria67@bmts.com>
Meaford, Ontario, Canada

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Thanks for a good word Joel.
    Blessings.


    Thank you, Joel, for this lesson. I pray your eyesight stays stable.


    Praise God for your testimony of His Presence no matter what comes our way. Blessings.


    I’ve forwarded your writing to my daughter. She will be reminded of God’s love as she goes about her optometry work. Thanks for sharing.


    Joel, thank you for reminding us about the importance of the protection of God. It certainly does protect us from all temptation that is around us.


    Thank you, Joel for this reminder. Someone said that ‘Belief is putting faith to work when doubting would be easier.’ Your devotional was very apt today for me.


    Dear Joel,
    May God strengthen you and all who name his name and love him, to do his will for the sake of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, and the Kingdom of God on earth.
    Amen. Keep praying and writing.


    Greetings Joel,
    Thank you for another very meaningful devotional. Our God is a wonderful shield and protector to us. Romans 8:28 and Philippians 4:13 have been special verses to me throughout many years.
    Blessings to you,
    (B.C.)


    Appreciated reading your today’s devotional. I, too, have had to wear one of those eye shields at night and know the “protection” it offers. I find it amazing what medical science can do these days, but even more amazing is His grace, His love, and His protection. I don’t know how non-Christians get through the day. Hope your eye continues to heal. God bless you.


    Hi Pastor Joel,
    Eye problems didn’t put a halt to the Apostle Paul’s service and from what I read this morning, you, too, are quite a trooper. Praise God!
    I say a hearty Amen to your following statement:
    “It is so great to know that we can always be protected by the shield of faith.” Thank you!


    Thank you for your devotional, and I will pray that the Lord will continue to give you wisdom and faith for your eyes. Be sure to read Psalm 139:13-14 and think of how God knit you together. I praise the Lord for what your doctors have been able to do to help you!


    Good Morning Joel,
    I always enjoy your Devotions in Presbycan and today’s was especially interesting. I have advanced glaucoma too. The fact I’ve been totally deaf since childhood due to illness has also made life more difficult. My trouble started around 20 years ago in left eye and was missed by my optometrist till quite advanced. That eye is blind now and right eye is very nearly done too.
    I still pray God will let me keep enough sight to manage in the retirement home I now live in.
    Keep up your fine writing.
    (On.)
    Hi Joel, I have been reading your devotionals for many years and have appreciated them. Thank you. I felt that I had some understanding of your background and life. We are fairly familiar with your part of our beautiful province.
    Reading yesterday’s devotional where you introduced your teaching by sharing your dealing with glaucoma really struck me. My wife has the same issue but so far has been able to treat with the drops once a day. What struck me is how you have continued to serve God faithfully and, from what I read, energetically while dealing with this issue. So this is just a simple thank you and to say that I admire your faithful walk. Blessings on you.

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