Gear Up

Not too long ago, I had taken a personality test titled, “Myers Briggs.” Based off the questions that are centered around the way we uniquely respond to emotionally charged situations, our views concerning ethics and morals, what we value most in our lives, and so on, the test sorts you into one of the many personality types depending on the answers given. If those who’re reading this post haven’t gotten a chance to take the test yet, or haven’t so much as heard of Myers Briggs, I highly recommend that you try it out. From personal experience, I was shocked to find out that this test had my personality traits down pat, to the point where it’s almost eerie how accurate the results turned out to be.

My personality type result was “INFJ” (Introverted, Intuitive, Feeling, Judging.) Here’s an excerpt from another blog post from a site called, “INFJ Ramblings” that sums up a big portion of what my personality type is all about:

“What is important to understand as INFJs is that our happiness depends not only on learning to understand why we react, think and do what we do. But also how we can predict and change our behavior accordingly to benefit us. Life can be more difficult for INFJs then many other personalities at times, and that’s why this is even more important for us. From what I have learned it is crucial for INFJs to start understanding and taking charge of how our emotions affect us. INFJs are a very feeling oriented type of personality, we are deeply emotional and most of our problems in life will relate to this heightened emotional sensitivity.”

I’ve always remembered having very strong emotional responses, seemingly stronger than what I’ve heard a lot of other people speak of when it came to describing the way they emotionally and mentally reacted during unsettling situations that would get just about anyone’s heart racing. I will confess that my emotions are often deeply felt, more so when i’m face-to-face with the not so good unfortunate things we all have to deal with from time to time. The strategic ways we keep our emotions at bay can vary, some naturally having an easier time doing so than others. I believe myself to be the kind of person, due to my personality type and the way I handle hardships, that has to make more of a conscious effort not to dig myself into a deep hole of defeat, so deep that I cannot easily climb out of and or “snap out of” my varying emotional reactions to life’s difficulties.

“Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.” Ephesians 6: 14 – 17

I firmly believe that Satan takes joy in spiritually attacking us when we’re the most vulnerable. I believe that’s when he enjoys to attack us the most. When our emotions seem all out of whack from whatever we’ve been dealing with, and we feel like the weight of the world is on our very shoulders, like the topping on the cake, Satan yearns for us to dig our own graves by accepting the feeling of defeat he hurls at us from the issues we’re dealing with at the time. He’ll throw all he can at us because he knows that we’re already weakened as is, so why not take on the opportunity to possibly wipe us out once and for all? We can’t let the enemy win, even when we’re at wits end. It’s tempting to throw in the towel when we’re already emotionally drained. We start to convince ourselves that there’s no way to struggle free from our overbearing emotions and thoughts. But that’s what the armor of God, the most indestructible protection available for us, is for.

I want to get to a place where I don’t have to “gear up” when hardships come my way. I want to already be prepared for whatever the enemy has in store for me. And although the strongest of spiritual warriors may forget about how powerful God’s armor really is, the armor never fails to protect us in the midst of the greatest spiritual battles we’ll ever have to endure. God knows beforehand what we’ll have to go through during our walk with Him. He’s just waiting to see if we’ll remember the gear he’s provided for us.

I picture a mighty spiritual warrior leading his sanctified army into battle with Satan. Satan unexpectedly puts up a stronger fight than the spiritual warrior thought he would. The warrior soon sees that he and his army are vastly outnumbered by Satan’s legion that’s far greater in number. Satan proclaims that there’s nothing more that the warrior can do at this point. The odds of the warrior succeeding is zero to none. But then, the warrior realizes that he is not fully equipped yet to go up against Satan’s trickery. Once the warrior gears up, making sure to put on each and every piece of armor God has to offer, Satan sees that the warrior was a force to be reckoned with all along. The mere sight of the armor the spiritual warrior wields could make Satan, who comes off to be all high and mighty, tremble with fear. That analogy of mine comes to mind when Satan finally backs down and yet again becomes aware of the fact that we are God’s warriors who all have armor of our own–we’ve just got to train ourselves to use it to the best of our abilities, especially when we feel like there’s nothing more we can do to lessen our misfortunes.

Often, our first reactions to the mishaps in our lives is to allow our fleshy emotions to get the best of us, and to proceed to go on with our lives unprotected by what else may come our way. When we’re mentally and emotionally at our weakest, that’s a green light for Satan to fight against us with all his might. We can’t let him control our flesh by giving into pity parties, dwelling on self-doubt and uselessness, no matter how tempting it is to just sit back and let the world chew us up and spit us out. We must consciously continue to fight against Satan’s scheme to drain us dry. I pray that we all come to see that our greatest battles are not with our flesh or the flesh of others around us, but with the enemy. God, help me to turn to You in times of trouble. Help me to see that I am more than a conquerer, even when I feel as though I don’t have enough willpower to be one. Amen.

- RR