I keep hearing the newsreaders going through that matter-of-fact but deadly patter—part of the almost weekly routine now for us it seems, but each time, the end of some family’s world.
‘The MOD has announced the death in Afghanistan this week of another British serviceman. He was corporal… of the … battle group, killed by an Improvised Explosive Device while on patrol outside the town of … in Helmand province. The family have been informed.’
Recently, NATO announced the death of ten allied troops in Afghanistan—all on the same day.
This is what 21st century warfare means for us. To have the same impact as the original, if St Paul was writing Ephesians chapter 6, verses 10 to 18, now, I think it might sound like this: (And it’s got nothing to do with being anti-Muslim).
‘Last-minute heads up guys; take God’s strength on board. Get yourselves kitted out with all His battle equipment so you can keep your position in the face of everything the enemy throws at you.
We aren’t fighting against human powers, but against the warlords of evil that can’t be seen; against massive forces of darkness and personal powers of evil in the spiritual world. Clip on every piece of kit so you can fight back when you make contact with the opposition. Then, after the fire-fight, you’ll still be holding ground.
Stand fast in your battle harness of Truth and with God’s full acceptance of you as His soldier—that’s like having Kevlar body armour. Get booted up with the inner calm that comes from the good news of God’s forgiveness and you’ll be ready for anything. There’s more. Get inside the armoured personnel carrier that is trust in God, to protect you from the enemy’s IEDs. Make sure you’ve signed up to God’s free rescue plan for you. If not, you might as well forget your helmet. And grab hold of your spiritual assault rifle—The Bible.
Keep your two-way communication channel to God open at all times; and under all conditions, keep your spiritual eyes peeled. Always, but always keep directing God’s help to the troops fighting in the other units.’
Let’s just do it.