In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. (Ephesians chapter 6, verses 14 – 15)
In this latest article the shield of faith will be the focus of my reflection and sharing.
Definition & Significance
The shield of faith is one of my favourite parts of the armour of God. A shield provides a strong defence against attacks. When a shield is wielded effectively, it will block the vast majority of attacks. It is a key instrument that protects but has an interesting offensive application where swinging it will turn it into a blade that can cut.
What we place our faith in shapes our lives. This is particularly applicable when we consider our faith and belief in God. Because we believe in a loving God who has offered us salvation, we can stand confident and firm against the attacks from the enemy—we are overcomers in Christ.
This faith is not something that comes from within us. It is a gift to us from God. He gives each of us a measure of faith (Romans chapter 12, verse 3). Then as we walk with Him, that faith grows and develops until it becomes a shield, protecting us and allowing us to live a victorious life in Christ.
When we swing our shield of faith, we proactively apply our faith to achieving God’s outcomes. Using His truth disempowers the lies and doubt of the enemy.
Without our faith keeping us strong, evil prowls and picks on our vulnerabilities and insecurity. Doubt, mistrust and lack of godly confidence creates a mindset where the enemy can easily cause us to sway and lose hope.
Faith in itself is that quiet confidence and surety that we have God on our side. When our faith is strong enough, we are able to intercede on behalf of those who struggle in their faith. The proactive nature of faith is us taking the battle to the enemy and simultaneously enfolding our vulnerable brothers and sisters. The power of a community of faith is this amplified effect when we work together to form a collective shield of faith to protect the vulnerable.
Application & Testimony
I count myself very blessed and indeed, I give glory and recognition to God that I have had the privilege to be a pillar of support to various people in my life. If my faith is strong, it is because of who I place it in and not of myself—Jesus is my rock in which I have and continue to build my faith.
If the level and strength of my faith is viewed positively, it is because it has been a life-long journey. God has definitely tested and refined my faith over the years to make it the shield it has become today. This shield has seen me weather spiritual battles and thrive in situations where others have struggled.
For me, the faith journey has had some clear milestones. In the beginning, which was Year Seven at school, I made a conscious decision that Jesus was my Lord and Saviour. He was and is the living Messiah who died for my sins & shortcomings. In accepting and believing that He rose again three days later, I decided to make that truth my foundation.
Years later, whilst I was studying in university, I “levelled up” and decided that I had to simply obey and stop delaying the instruction to be baptised—and that my public declaration of faith would be my new rock; my faith had finally reached that level of maturity. Since those early days, my understanding of God and the relationship that has grown with Him has enabled me to actively pursue an attunement with the Holy Spirit such that I can see God working in and around me, through friends, family and the church community.
Dear God I thank you for helping me develop a shield of faith because it is not an easy process. Thank you for making the journey itself very rewarding. There have been times in my life when, in the midst of a valley, I myself did not recognise my shield of faith at work. Now that I have this understanding, thank you God for unveiling my eyes and for this moment of reflection where I can see that You were there beside me.
I thank you God, that faith without action is a reality which Paul first recorded in James, chapter 2 verse 26, “Just as the body is dead without breath, so also faith is dead without good works.” I thank you God for the prompting of the Holy Spirit actively working in my heart and mind so that I can have an active faith—growing and being refined. Jesus, help me to constantly find the balance in attitude—that I am saved by grace yet also compelled by Your love to willingly serve and contribute to the Kingdom of God here on earth.
I praise You, Father God for building up my faith and sustaining it through all the difficult times. In Jesus Name, Amen.
Nic works by day as a Business Analyst Consultant whilst, outside of business hours, maintains an IT support & website services business. He volunteers with 89.9 LightFM (Christian Community Radio). Nic has served for over twenty years in his local church, in worship, technology consulting, life group leading and event management.