As Halloween looms closer—surely you’ve noticed the Wal-mart displays—I enjoy remembering many, many years of costumes waltzing out my front door. From puppies and princesses to pumpkins and pirates, dressing-up was thoroughly relished at our address.
But a particular outfit came to mind today as I was reading 1 and 2 Thessalonians. You may call that daydreaming; I call it a visual aid. See what you think.
When my son was about eight years old he dressed up as Rambo. And the affect was completed by a pair of sleeves simulating bulging muscles. So once Cam inserted his age-appropriately-scrawny little arms into the sleeves: Poof! Instant guns. He loved it.
So today as I read repeatedly of being strengthened, those fabric biceps came to mind:
“We sent Timothy…to strengthen and encourage you in your faith” 1 Thess 3:2
“May (the Lord) strengthen your hearts…” 1Thess 3:13a
“May the Lord Jesus Christ Himself and God our Father…encourage your hearts and strengthen you in every good deed and word.” 2 Thess 2:16a-17
“But the Lord is faithful, and He will strengthen and protect you from the evil one.”
2 Thess 3:3
Lord, please strengthen and encourage that new believer in her faith. Oh, and strengthen the heart of my sweet cousin missing her mom. Then those churches and pastors sure could use Your encouragement and strength infused into their every word and deed.
And my kids, Lord: please strengthen and protect them from the evil one.
You get the idea. Then, not so terribly unlike my son’s Rambo sleeves, we get to slip some extra muscle into our prayers as God makes us stronger than we really are.