who’s armour are you wearing?
children find playing dress up a lot of fun. my granddaughter loves grabbing my shoes and walking around the house feeling big. wearing my winter boots is the most amusing…they cover her entire leg and she trips a lot because of the extended, unused portion in the toes. quite cute, though.
i find that even adults play dress up, of sorts, but doing so is not as fun as when we were children. in fact, wearing someone else’s armour (as i call it) can cause grief.
let me share this story with you then i will explain further.
there was a young boy who lived in Israel. one day his father sent him on an errand to take lunch to his soldier brothers. as he approached the military camp, he noticed a bit of a ruckus going on.
he watched curiously. before him was a massive soldier taunting his brothers’ battalion. his brothers and the other men did not look as brave and threatening as he would have imagined them to be in response. in fact, they weren’t doing anything but shaking in their boots.
his steps quickened, he didn’t feel his age, courage seemed to be building within him…bullying is just not right, something needed to be done.
he located his brothers and questioned, “what’s his problem? someone should put him in his place!”
his brothers’ laughed, thanked him for lunch and suggested he retreat back to his father where it was safe. frontline battle was no place for their kid brother.
in the distance he could hear the huge man yelling, “Come on, you cowards…is there not one of you brave enough to fight me! come on, let’s do this! get over here, i’ll wipe the floor with you!”
the taunting angered the young man, “why are you all just standing there? somebody do something. there is no way this guy can win!” no one replied. “then i’ll go! what’s the prize?” laughter erupted. “yeah, right!”
he went to the King who was leading the army and offered to go. he explained how he had successfully protected his father’s sheep from dangerous animals because his God had given him wisdom and strength.
it sounded pretty far fetched but, honestly, there was no one else stepping up to take this bully on. at the resistance of his men, he gave the order for the young man to be dressed for battle. in fact, the King would give him the best armour available…his. he would also give the boy his fine sword. maybe the boy’s blood would satisfy the angry enemy enough for him to retreat back to his camp for the night.
when the men finished fitting the boy with the armour, they presented him to the king. he was ready for this crazy plan. the king questioned whether he was sure he wanted to go through with the whole thing.
“absolutely! i’m not afraid! I trust my God to be with me!” he started to take a step and nearly tripped. the armed host roared in laughter. “i can do this but not with all this armour…it doesn’t fit…it wasn’t made for me. get it off me!!”
the boy laid down the sword, took off
monstrous armour and walked toward the battle field leaving all the men behind him shaking their heads in doubt, “he’s gonna get slaughtered.”
he didn’t, though. he took that gigantic man down -in his own clothes and using his own simple weapon. once down, he finished the bully off with his own sword.
his brothers and their comrades were no longer laughing…they were cheering for him. the enemy wasn’t laughing either…they were running.
who’s armour are you wearing?
are you wearing your own armour or someone else’s?
sometimes, we see what someone else is doing and think, “i should put that on and let it work for me.” the problem is that someone else’s armour (what works for them) was custom made to fit them and their situation.
what fits their life probably won’t fit you like it does them. you might stumble around and end up falling on your face.
you and i must be confident in what custom fits our life in order to achieve the best results.
my husband and i refer to this story often. we all know that men and women think, act and produce in deferring ways. sometimes, i think my husband should just suck it up and do things the right way…my way. 😜
however, he will say to me, “i’m going to go ahead and just where my armour on this one.” in other words, ” it might be a differing approach to yours but i’ll function better if i use my skills, my way.”
sometimes, i have to remind him of the same.
we all want to succeed. we may admire the success that others have achieved. we may be able to learn wisdom from their journey but we cannot put on their armour and it fit perfectly to our situation.
nor can we expect others to put on our armour and make it fit their lives. parents have difficulty remembering this when it comes to their adult children.
i have had times that i wanted my daughter to take my approach to raising her children or caring for her household. i have also had to respectfully take a giant step back and allow her to take my armour off and be free to put on what fits best for her.
we must trust the person to make their journey in their way using the special specific gifts and skills uniquely designed for them.
we also have to trust the same in our own lives. there are many things that i would love to do but i just don’t possess those specific skills, personality traits or talents. i love to laugh. i enjoy sitting with my witty brother and hearing what he comes up with off the top of his head. i laugh and giggle.
i decided one day that i’d give being a comedian a shot. i chose a handicapped person in the grocery store that i wanted to make smile…and i went in for the kill wearing my brother’s armour that I dearly admired.
i died out there…or probably should have!
firstly, i had terrible material, an inappropriate audience (an unwilling one as well) and my timing was way off. witty, funny or encouraging…those words do not describe my performance at all! i was more like a creepy weirdo. i wanted to crawl in a hole ( and should have!)
my armour would have been to stop, have polite, caring conversation and see if i could assist reaching something that they could not reach. that approach fits me better…works much better for me and people i encounter.
i learned that day that i have no sense of humor 😍 but i am good at offering kindness and a helping hand…and i should stick with that.
it’s difficult at times…
but truly, the best approach is…
wear your own armour with confidence and assurance…it will fit better than anything else you might try!