THE SANDALS OF PEACE
…and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.
~ Ephesians 6:15 (NIV)
The cry for peace is as old as the dawn of history and as fresh as the morning newspaper. Several centuries before Christ, the prophet Isaiah said, “How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace….” (Isaiah 52:7)
When the Hebrew prophets foretold the coming of a divine deliverer, they said one of his names would be “Prince of Peace.” When the Savior was born, the note struck by the angelic chorus in the nativity story of the shepherds was “…and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.” (Luke 2:14)
Therefore, it is not surprising that when describing the armor of God, Paul included the element of peace. As God’s peacemakers, our sandals enable us to march into circumstances to bring peace, not destruction. Christ calls people who have made their peace with God to fight for fellowship, not against it (Hebrews 12:2-3). So we must be ready to go where God sends us with the message of peace, forgiveness and hope. We may be called to march right to the gates of hell—which He promised would not hold us back (Matthew 16:18). It is in this sense that we can be considered “waging” peace.
Your life thus centers on the good news of the kingdom. Everything else comes second. Know how to share the good news. Understand what it has done in your life. See how it can help others. Ask God to give you opportunities to share with others. Be alert for the opportunities. Be prepared to take advantage of them…standing strong in your sandals of peace.
Brother Alagaw in Ethiopia started an aggressive gospel ministry in his region. People accepted the Lord through his preaching. The people of the traditional church colluded with the Muslim fundamentalists to fight Alagaw and his followers. They said, “These people will destroy our country, nation and religions if we do not stop them immediately.”
Alagaw and his followers organized their first evangelistic meeting at the local stadium. They hired sound systems for this big occasion. Early in the morning they started with their outreach. At about 10:00 a.m. a big crowd approached the stadium. Without saying a word, they destroyed the sound system and a lot of other property. Some believers went to the local police station, but the police refused to help. During the attack, a pregnant woman lost her baby.
After this incident other forms of harassment followed. During church services stones were thrown on the roof of the church building. Faceless people burned down their church building. However, the Lord has blessed their ministry and their peaceful responses with one hundred and twenty new believers.
RESPONSE: Today I put on the sandals of peace and stand firm in the good news of the Gospel.
PRAYER: Lord, may Your peace shine through me today and be a light to all I encounter.
Standing Strong Through The Storm (SSTS), a daily devotional message by SSTS author Paul Estabrooks. © 2011 Open Doors International. Used by permission.