oh what a "knight"...

Let me tell you about my amazing life and my amazing day yesterday. It is days like yesterday that only further confirm my work as a youth minister.
Last night we had the competition between 3 different churches in a field. We called this WAR GAMES. What a blast we had. And let me tell you first and foremost, there are some things that sound good on paper, but when you put it into action, it doesn't always seem to turn out the way you pictured it. I call this the "sandcastle theory". This is where you picture this awesome sand castle in your mind and then you start to build it, and it looks nothing like the castle you imagined. However, that being said, WAR GAMES was a huge success.
Just take a look at some of the pictures and then I will get into the God part of all of this:








Looking back, the egg toss= not a good idea. Next time, it will be a little more organized and we will have more time. It's ok though! We had a blast just getting egged, having flour thrown at you, and feeling like a pancake would when being made. As Jamie put it best, "Operation Pancake" was a huge success. I would concur.
Now let's dive down a little deeper into this event we had. It was all about WAR. We had the egg war, the flour/water balloon war, and it was all in fun yet we didn't get to do a lesson due to running over the time limit.
However, I will tie this into the lesson that I was preparing to tell the students and that I got to tell the students at mid high group.
When I was little, I was fascinated with castles. I would love to read about them and just learn all I could about those times. I wanted to live back in those times just so I could live in a castle. Then as my knowledge progressed about castles, I learned more about how the castles were built, why they were built, and who lived in them and around them. Then I started to get into the whole medieval times. I loved to learn about the knights as well. One of my favorite books was King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table (The great illustrated classics of course).
I was so into castles and knights that I got into legos and all I wanted was to build the lego castles. They would sit on display in my bedroom floor and no one could touch them but me. It was a great childhood.
I was also the weird kid. When I would go outside to play, I would put on a trash bag, grab the lid from the trash can, find the gardening shovel, and put on a helmet of some sorts and pretend to fight the knights of the air. They were the invisible army of bad knights who would attack my house or castle. I would defend it all over the yard and sometimes I would die and lay in the grass. People probably laughed at me and drove by thinking, "there goes that Ashby kid again...". In fact, I am pretty sure I get that now.
However, when I dressed up in my armor, nothing would hurt me. I was protected. My body armor (trashbag), my shield (trash can lid), my sword (gardening shovel), and my helmet (helmet) were what protected me from the bad knights.
However, and here is the kicker, we are also protected from Satan with the Armor of God. Paul talks about it in Ephesians 6:10-19.
The Armor of God
10Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes. 12For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. 13Therefore 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. 14Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. 18And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.

19Pray also for me, that whenever I open my mouth, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel, 20for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should.

We can protect ourselves from God. And sometimes people will say things about us when we wear the armor of God. I will tell you one thing, when I am battling the spirits of Satan, I would not have any sharper sword than the word of God by my side.
Remember earlier how I mentioned the "sand castle" theory? Instead of building the sand castles of our lives to how we picture it, let's build the sand castle of our lives with God's help. It is then that He can build walls strong enough to protect you from the enemy. You will have a beautiful sandcastle ready and waiting for you, when it is built on the foundation of Christ.
Be a knight with the armor of God protecting you. Let your creative Creator build the sandcastle of your life. If He can make you and me, He can build something so beautiful to live in.
Thinking on last night...Oh what a "knight'!

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