Someone once commented that we have to always be on our guard because the armor of God (Ephesians 6:10+) doesn’t provide defensive armor for the back of the body. Thanks to Cindy for finding Isaiah 52:12 for me: “… The Lord will go before you, the God of Israel will be your rear guard.”
One of my aunts sent me an article by Pastor Dave Hess, entitled Shielded, that speaks to a similar aspect of God’s protective shield.
Pastor Dave contracted AML, the same type of leukemia as I have, when he was 39. He talks about not expecting to live throughout the week, never mind a year. One member of his congregation reminded him of a verse about God being a shield around us. (Psalm 3:3 – You are a shield around me oh Lord.) Dave had rather dismissed the reminder as a nice gesture, but “real life miracles today?” Then at the end of his last round of chemo, his appendix burst. Surgery wasn’t an option because his platelets were so low, he would probably bleed to death. And his white counts were so low he couldn’t fight the infection without the surgery. Amazingly, his white blood levels rose and his platelets multiplied enough so the surgeon could at least proceed with exploratory surgery to assess the damage.
The doctor was amazed by what he discovered. “I’ve never seen anything like this,” the surgeon explained. Holding up a photo, he pointed out what remained of the burst appendix. Then he pointed to a circular tent-like structure composed of tightly knit adhesions. Making a circle, he said that this kind of scar tissue is the strongest known and normally is seen only after someone has had surgery. He explained that this protective scar tissue ‘wall’ contained all the toxins within it. All the adhesions acted as little ‘shields’ packed together to protect the rest of Dave’s body! (Yes, miracles do still happen.)
What kind of shield do you pick up when you are in trouble? God provides us with a shield of faith to protect us from the fiery darts meant to harm and dismay us. And he himself provides a shield that surrounds us with goodwill (Psalm 5:12). He promises: “under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.” (Psalm 91:4)
When getting dressed and changing clothes, let’s remember to also put on the shield of our faithful God.