At my back and front door are a pair of slip-on shoes.
Because inside my home, my feet are always bare. I understand that it can be good for us to walk barefooted. Spiritually speaking, however, this is not a luxury we can afford.
In order for us to stand firm and fight from victory, Paul informs us in Ephesians 6:15 that we must always have our feet “shod or fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.” Our third piece of armor are shoes that must not be left at our door.
That means no bare feet!
The Roman soldiers were always outfitted for battle with sandals that were heavily studded with nails firmly placed directly through the sole of the shoe to create stability so they could hold their ground in battle. (Just think of our young boys who wear cleats when playing sports to maintain the traction they need to stand firm.) Ephesians 6:13 tells us this: a winning warrior needs stability to stand her ground, and having done all she can to still be found standing.
My cousins and I used to play a beach shore game. After planting our feet out in the water, the one who withstood the waves the longest without losing their footing would be declared the winner. Something I discovered was this: the longer I stood firm, the deeper my feet would go into the soil, providing for me a stronger stance.
Have you ever been knocked off your feet?
By the enemy?
Or, an unexpected crisis?
What about a heart-aching disappointment?
Having our feet shod with the shoes of peace will create stability during these times.
How do shoes of peace work for us? When the circumstances in our life are difficult, the enemy takes note. He takes that opportunity to move in like a flood, he crashes waves of anxiety, worry, and fear against us. Do you know why? The purpose of the attack is to keep our salvation from being lived out in power in our personal lives.
Let’s think about how peace nullifies the attack of the enemy!
The Biblical definition of peace is tranquility of soul, despite external turmoil. The opposite of peace is anxiety and worry. Colossians 3:15 instructs us to “Let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts.”
The word rule means “umpire” – When you and I allow the peace of God to “make the call” when life is not easy, the world around us will take note that this peace has to be from God.
And, when we have God’s peace we will be putting Jesus on full display. Philippians 4:7 states: “And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
Does the opportunity to display Christ in your life in this way excite you?
There is a difference in the peace of God and the peace of the world. The world’s peace is temporary and only a momentary happening, short-lived because there is no assurance backing it up. The world’s peace is from the “outside in” through drugs, entertainment, imperfect people, and fleeting monetary gain.
God’s peace, on the other hand, is permanent and never runs out. The promise and purchase of His peace has already been deposited through the blood of Jesus.
John 14:27 – “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”
Our goal is simply to draw out of what has already been deposited in the spiritual realm and available to us in the physical realm.
God’s peace is from the “inside out!”
Tony Evans says, “If the lack of peace is your normal way of operating, you are not wearing shoes.” If that is the way we are rolling today, I think we need to sound the shofar in the enemy's face, choosing to draw out of Him on the inside what has already been deposited in the heavenlies – His peace!
Let’s memorize this promise together:
Isaiah 26:3 – “You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you.”
MY WAR ZONE:
A few years ago, I developed a detached retina. After surgery, I was left with vertical and horizontal double vision called Intermittent Exotrophia. Several surgeries later, I was told that my vision would never be completely restored. I was devastated. How could I go on teaching the Word if I could not even read it! I cried out to God to bring complete healing. I prayed that if this visual distortion had to be permanent, I would have peace to endure it on the inside and the courage to continue to serve Him on the outside. When it was time to teach again, I called on a teacher friend of mine to come to my home, sit at my bar, and read the passage to me. She shared her input on the passage and allowed me to rehearse how I would teach it. It was the inner peace of God that enabled me to stand before 60+ women and outwardly share His Word. I walked away and felt the pleasure of God because I had chosen to appropriate my shoes of peace, refusing to allow the enemy to knock me off my feet. I am thanking God that my brain has actually corrected my double vision almost to original state. I no longer require prism glasses and my vision is 30/20. God has amazed me and my doctors.
- Reflect on your favorite pair of shoes. Why do you love them? Do they look good on the outside or provide your comfort on the inside?
- Have you been able to identify the correlation between anxiety and worry reflecting a lack of peace?
- How have you been guilty of depending on the world’s peace instead of God’s peace? Would you feel free to share how this enabled the enemy to “knock you off your feet?”
- Now, share a difficult time in your life when your feet shod in God’s peace kept you standing firm.
Sound the shofar! Proclaim Isaiah 26:3 – “You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you.” Remember, we are fighting not FOR victory but FROM victory!
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