Monday, June 20, 2011

The Proverbs 31 Journey: Strength & Honor

Memory/Meditation verse: Strength and honor are her clothing, and she can laugh at the time to come. ~ Proverbs 31: 25 (HCSB)

When I boldly awaken to 2011 I knew that God was calling me to be more intentional in my spiritual life. Life had dealt me some cards that made me feel like a I would have preferred not to have had to live out. Cards I didn't feel I deserved. I yearned for more of God, His peace and an ability to stand firm in life and strong in Him. I wanted to be the kind of woman described in Proverbs 31.

God has
taken me to places that have been tough to address in this Proverbs 31 Journey but I am experience a peace in my life, His peace, that proves He is in control. I have written these blog words this year for myself and they are a reflection of His remodeling on my life. I am so grateful for this journey and my Lords companionship.

We will finish looking at the concept of putting on the armor of God this week. La
st week I encouraged you to review Hebrews 11 and to look at the great people of faith recorded there. I found encouragement looking at their not so perfect life with not so impressive qualifications to intentionally live out God's plan and the effect it would have on others. Intentional faith has to be shielded by wearing God's armor. Intentional faith requires obedience even if you don't have the full picture of the outcome intended.

This week lets examine th
e final dressing of the noble and brave Proverbs 31 Woman: the Helmet of Salvation and the Sword of the Spirit. Refresh yourself with Ephesians 6: 11-18 (NLT) here. We will focus on verses 17 & 18:

And take the helmet of salvation and the sword that the Spirit wields, which is the Word of God. Pray at all times (on every occasion, in every season) in the Spirit, with all [manner of] prayer and entreaty. To that end keep alert and watch with strong purpose and perseverance, interceding in behalf of all the saints (God's consecrated people).

When someone goes into battle, they know the most vulnerable and deadly areas of attack is the chest (heart) and the head (mind). We have addressed last week the shield of faith and its protection for the body and heart. But what about our minds? What is Paul referencing here with the Helmet of Salvation?

Look at this example of satan's attack on Jesus in Matt 4:2-11. A major area of attack from satan was the mind of Jesus-what He believe, how He was thinking. Satan was trying to get to Christ mind with the weapons of doubt and discouragement. And when did he attack the hardest? When physically and mentally Jesus was drained.

Isn't this so like satan today? His attempts at spiritual head wounds are relentless for us Jesus girls! He is good at catching us at our weakest times, isn't he? He tries to plant doubts of our eternal salvation with God and tries to blind us from who we are in Christ. His aim is to discourage us in our faith walk and witness of God's grace and love. Though the helmet may not resemble a tiara that we Jesus girls might prefer to wear, it is a vital component of our daily wardrobe as we progress and grow in this Proverbs 31 Journey.

Our eternal salvation comes from God alone and can not be taken from us, no matter how poorly we may behave. What a refreshing promise!

There is salvation in no one else! God has given no other name under heaven by which we must be saved.”
~ Acts 4:12 (NLT)

A Proverbs 31 Woman confidently places the Helmet of Salvation each morning. It is her hope, her trusting that God's promises are for all who call Him Lord and Master. It is the spiritual protection of her mind which guides her actions and reactions.

But let us who live in the light be clearheaded, protected by the armor of faith and love, and wearing as our helmet the confidence of our salvation.
~ 1 Thess 5:8 (NLT)

This confidence and hope comes from an intentional relationship with God. An intentional worship and reverence of Him. The more you know Him, hope in Him and confide in Him, the better you will be able to share Him and demonstrate Him in your life.

Instead, you must worship Christ as Lord of your life. And if someone asks about your Christian hope, always be ready to explain it.
~ 1 Peter 3:15 (NLT)

This is a true mark of a Proverbs 31 Woman, a Jesus girl. Her beauty comes from Him. Her hope in Him is her strength. Her heart of faithfulness to Him is a sweet aroma.

But thanks be to God, who always puts us on display in Christ, and spreads through us in every place the scent of knowing Him. For to God we are the fragrance of Christ among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing.
~ 2 Cor. 2:14-15 (HCSB)

Her faith and her hope is her security and assurance. Along with this, the greatest weapon she has to continue to protect her mind, soul and body was evidence by Christ again in Matt 4:2-11. He used the Word of God-which is referenced by Paul in Ephesians 6:17 as the Sword of the Spirit- to combat satans attacks.

"For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ..."
~ 2 cor. 10: 3-5 (NKJV)

There is nothing more powerful than the Sword of the Spirit. I can testify in my life that scripture has carried me, healed me, guided me, comforted me, and protected me.

For the word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires.
~ Heb 4:12 (NLT)

Ladies, we have to put God's Word to heart. We have to meditate on it, breath it, live it. Memorizing scripture is vital for our survival in this world. Hunger and thirst for it. Let it become the "oxygen" that sustains your living.

As Ephesians 6:18 implies, once we put on God's armor: the Breastplate of Righteousness, the Belt of Truth, the Sandals of Peace, The Shield of Faith, the Helmet of Salvation, the Sword of Truth we need to coat our wearing of this armor with prayer. Prayer in the Spirit is a necessary component to this wardrobe. Our spiritual warfare is on-going and prayer can be the magnetic field that covers us.

Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.
~ Phil 4:6-7 (NIV)

Prayer is the intervention that allows us to experience peace and contentment when chaos surrounds our life. It is though the Holy Spirits power that we can have all that we need in Christ.

Jesus replied, “I assure you, no one can enter the Kingdom of God without being born of water and the Spirit. Humans can reproduce only human life, but the Holy Spirit gives birth to spiritual life.
~ John 3:5-6 (NLT)

Prayer seals our love relationship with God. The prayer life of a Proverbs 31 Woman demonstrates not only submission, but also a heart of love and mind of worship in action.

But you, dear friends, must build each other up in your most holy faith, pray in the power of the Holy Spirit, and await the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ, who will bring you eternal life. In this way, you will keep yourselves safe in God’s love.
~ Jude 20-21

Here is some "oxygen" for you to inhale throughout this week. Daily breath in its truth, experience its power and live spiritually strong. Armour up!

That is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are being renewed every day. For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever! So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever.
~ 2 cor 4:16-18 (NLT)

See how very much our Father loves us, for he calls us his children, and that is what we are! But the people who belong to this world don’t recognize that we are God’s children because they don’t know him. Dear friends, we are already God’s children, but he has not yet shown us what we will be like when Christ appears. But we do know that we will be like him, for we will see him as he really is. And all who have this eager expectation will keep themselves pure, just as he is pure.
~ 1 John 3:1-3 (NLT)

I have tried hard to find you—don’t let me wander from your commands. I have hidden your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you. I praise you, O L
ord; teach me your decrees.
~ Ps 119:10-12 (NLT)

"...those the Father has given me will come to me, and I will never reject them. For I have come down from heaven to do the will of God who sent me, not to do my own will. And this is the will of God, that I should not lose even one of all those he has given me, but that I should raise them up at the last day."
~ John 6:37 (NLT)

“You don’t have enough faith,” Jesus told them. “I tell you the truth, if you had faith even as small as a mustard seed, you could say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it would move. Nothing would be impossible.”
~ Matt. 17:20 (NIV)

"...I will pray with my spirit, but I will also pray with my understanding; I will sing with my spirit, but I will also sing with my understanding.
~ 1 cor 14:15 (NIV)

But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere—in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
~ Acts 1:8

* * * * * *

Father, my Holy and Sovereign God, you intended to get my attention this year through this study I call the Proverbs 31 Journey and you have. You have exposed my heart, my mind and my soul to the point that I have been able to experience a fresh cleansing and transformation. I thank you even for the pain it has caused me. I thank you for the growth of my faith. You lead me on each of these topics and though I wanted these words impressed on my heart from You to be beneficial to others too, I embrace the comfort and the insight You have selected specifically for me. Continue to lead my heart and mind in this Proverbs 31 Journey over the rest of this year. I embrace this journey of walking intentionally with you. You overwhelm me Lord. I know there's more for me in your plan. I can feel it. I can taste it. Make me ready Lord. Purify my body, mind and spirit so I can serve you in the grace that you have bestowed on me. Though this armor would appear to weigh heavy, it has enlighten me and left me with a transparent peace of You in my life, completely controlling my circumstances and guiding my actions. I am yours Lord. May all the words you place on my heart for these continued postings glorify You only.

Believing Him ~ Pamela

1 comment:

elaine @ peace for the journey said...


I'm dumbstruck with your words; especially the part about "breathing" in the Word of God. Just today I wrote a piece entitled "Just Breathe"... in it I talk about spiritual CPR. Your words are yet another confirmation to me that I'm on the right track, not only with my writing, but moreso with my heart.

Love you sister; take good care of your heart!