As I have discovered over the years, God can be extremely creative in the way He chooses to communicate with us. Of course, one of the best and most reliable methods of receiving advice, comfort, or direction from Him would be reading the good old Bible. However, this is far from the only way believers can expect to hear from God.
From random song titles to snippets of overheard conversations in the checkout line, I have “bumped into” God in countless exciting and inspiring ways. More recently, I have noticed this occurring through the use of product labels. One day, it might be a little blurb printed on the back of a receipt, while the next day might present a message via a water bottle; there’s really no telling where the next bit of food for thought might pop up.
Perhaps the most entertaining and giggle-inspiring instance of God meeting me right in my everyday environment would be the message he pointed out… right on my deodorant. Yes, you read me correctly. For some reason, God decided to utilize a new Ban deodorant to draw my attention to a concept I desperately needed to be reminded of. The funniest thing about this whole thing isn’t the fact that He selected something so common and odd, but that I actually can’t stand this particular deodorant.
“24-Hour Invisible Protection”
While there is no issue with the brand itself (even though I tend to greatly prefer Degree), its specific variety is not something I would typically choose to buy. When it comes to beauty and hygiene products I love anything that smells good, so when I accidentally ran out of deodorant recently and needed to procure a replacement bottle from someone on the fly, it was a slight bummer that the deodorant was unscented.
Even though unscented deodorants work just as well as scented ones, I’ve always had a hard time convincing my brain to accept that fact. Without actually smelling the deodorant, I sometimes feel as though it isn’t working, which is why I always reach for scented varieties whenever I can. Perhaps my prevailing disapproval of the unscented deodorant replacement is precisely why God elected to minister to me through it. Besides, with all of the resentful glances I’ve been giving it each morning, He was probably sure that I wouldn’t miss His reminder.
One day, when I was just getting out of the shower, I noticed the message for the first time:
24-Hour Invisible Protection.
“Hmm… okay, God.” I thought. “24-Hour Invisible Protection. This seems like something you are pointing out. I don’t particularly understand the significance, but if this pops up again I’ll ask you more about it.”
Sure enough, I ended up having my attention drawn to the caption on the label a second time. Only on this occasion, I understood the significance of the message. God was trying to remind me of the fact that he offers the very same thing that the deodorant (claims) to provide: 24-Hour Invisible Protection. When I recognized His message of reassurance, I knew I had to come and share the very same revelation with you guys in hopes of helping anyone who might need a similar reminder in these trying times.
With all of the unrest, confusion, and change that has been going on in the world over the last several months, it has been a challenging time to say the least. Never in my life have I had to pray as often and as fervently as I have felt compelled to do in 2020. Between praying for the preservation and encouragement of others and praying for myself to remain fearless and rooted in the Word, I’ve been keeping very busy!
Despite having a strong faith life, the spiritual warfare that I’ve encountered recently has admittedly been a struggle to stay on top of, so as much as I hate to admit it, I’ve occasionally found myself allowing fear or excessive worry to get the upper hand.
As we all know, believers are not to look out at the natural, physical world and get caught up in what we see unfolding before our eyes. Instead, we are expected to walk in faith and operate in a continual posture of faith alone, which guarantees divine protection and enduring strength– regardless of what negative events we see going on around us. However, as many of you have likely experienced, this is often easier said than done.
In the midst of life-threatening, worldwide illness, a buckling economy, racially-fueled violence, and growing social unrest, it is only natural to wonder where this road is leading us. But as the Bible promises, for those who love the Lord and are pleased to walk in His ways, His protection and love for us works around the clock. He doesn’t take lunch breaks. He doesn’t turn a blind eye and He never takes a vacation. We are His main priority 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. We are his pride and joy to protect for eternity.
The Characteristics of God’s Divine Protection
God’s Protection Is Continuous
As I mentioned previously, God is not the type to fall asleep on the job. No matter what we’re going through, what time of day it is, or what we’ve done in the past, God’s protection comes with no hidden fees or expiration dates. When we accepted Jesus as our Lord and Savior, we received God’s promise of eternal protection from the evil of this world.
Much like invisible and unscented deodorant, God is always there fighting for us, whether we can actively perceive his presence or not. But unlike deodorant, God never clocks out. This being said, please don’t put deodorant on one time, thinking it will work forever more; those around you may not be too appreciative (lol)!
God’s Protection Is Unfailing
In addition to being continual, the protection that God so freely offers us is also unfailing. This means that there is literally nothing on the face of this Earth that He cannot manage. There is no form of illness, strife, or persecution that He lacks the ability to save us from. There is no person or group of people devious enough to outsmart or outwit God, nor is there any personal struggle that can’t be rectified through His love and mercy.
Although it is common for us to experience times when we are weak in heart, body, mind, or spirit, God is unchanging; His strength is unending and infallible, so we can always have confidence that He will and can help us in our time of need.
God’s Protection Is Assuring
If there’s one thing that I love about God (and believe me, I could rattle off tons of other qualities), it’s that He is honest. No matter what you may have heard out here in the world, God is not a liar. When He says something, He means it. When He promises you that He’s going to do something particular in your life, He’s going to do it.
Contrary to how other people may utter lies and charm us with false promises, God is faithful to fulfill all that He promises to do. So, when God asks us to be assured that He will help us, it is worth us rejoicing over!
However, it is also beneficial for us to heed his instructions because in order for us to be “assured” of His divine assistance, we must believe that He is not only capable of protecting us, but also willing to protect us, which He always is.
God’s Protection Is Persevering
As many of you may have experienced, there are sometimes situations and hindrances that believers face throughout their lives that seem impossible to overcome. Even still, these issues may persist despite prayers and all of the best intentions. Personally, I have been faced with a very troublesome and several years long family dispute that has not resolved itself despite my most sincere prayers.
Wrestling with a particular problem for an extended period of time without witnessing an outward manifestation of reconciliation or redemption can be a huge challenge for us, leading us to perhaps wonder if God is still fighting on our behalf. I have to tell you that He certainly does.
“My sheep recognize my voice. I know them, and they follow me. I give them real and eternal life. They are protected from the Destroyer for good. No one can steal them from out of my hand. The Father who put them under my care is so much greater than the Destroyer and Thief. No one could ever get them away from him. I and the Father are one heart and mind.“John 10:28-30 (MSG)
Even though my family issues continue, God has lovingly protected my parents and I from the toxicity and raging negativity attached to that situation. This being said, God doesn’t withdraw his protection or concern for us just because our problems are persistent and appear to be beyond hope. If God was able to peaceably preserve my heart despite the hindrances I have experienced, He is more than capable and willing to do the exact same thing for you.
God’s Protection Is Satisfying
God’s brand of protection is like nothing else on this Earth. Unlike manmade “protection” devices (think anti-virus programs and phone security), God’s protection can’t be hacked or overridden. There’s no secret password to lose or have stolen and changed; with God we can have complete peace of mind. The protection He provides is exactly what we need, when we need it– no frills or unnecessary bells and whistles. And because it is pure, driven by love, and genuine, it has the ability to fill us with a peace and contentment that is unrivaled.
When you fully come to acknowledge and accept God’s protection over your life, you will want for nothing. You will actually feel His presence and know without a doubt that He is in your corner, which produces a satisfaction and boldness that enriches and beautifies every area of your life. Fear becomes a mere four-letter word.
God’s Protection Is Necessary
I don’t know about you, but I can’t imagine life without God and his watchful eye. Then again, I recall how my life was before really committing it to Christ, and it was NOT something I would care to ever revisit!
That being said, God’s protection is not just an optional perk that believers can casually partake of or not; it is downright mandatory. Without accepting and walking in God’s protection, a believer won’t survive very long in today’s fallen world.
From illness and injury to the separation from God via sin and persecution, there are countless threats that can enter into our lives if we don’t remain protected by the Lord. Though this is certainly not said in order to instill fear in anyone, we must always keep in mind that it is God who protects us and guides our path through life– not us. We simply cannot do it alone.
What Does God’s Protection Guard Against?
As wonderful and important as it is for us to remain mindful of God’s desire to protect us in all that we do, it is equally essential to keep in mind what his protection is actually designed to guard against. Grabbing ahold of these truths and really digesting them does an exemplary job of giving us the confidence necessary to reside within the world and mingle with the world’s people while retaining our heavenly postures and avoiding the inclination to behave and think as the world does.
So whenever fear grips you and threatens your confidence in the Lord’s ability to keep you, please remember that you are shielded from any permanent damage that may seek to come your way.
As we all know, the world that we currently live in today is far from being entirely lovely. Personally, I am not a fan of those who run around calling actual individuals “evil”, so for all intents and purposes, please understand that my references to “evil” have nothing to do with people themselves, but the spirit(s) behind their deeds and speech or the behaviors themselves.
But the Lord is faithful, and He will strengthen you [setting you on a firm foundation] and will protect and guard you from the evil one.2 Thessalonians 3:3 (AMP)
In the context of this particular verse, it is made known to us that God can protect us from “The Evil One” (aka Satan, the Devil, the Enemy, etc.). This is an extremely loaded topic, so we can’t delve into this as fully as I’d like to at this time, but it’s important to know that you don’t need to live in fear of the Enemy or the various methods he may try to use in order to put you in bondage.
Of course, we have all heard of instances where believers have unfortunately become victims at the hands of “evil men” and their unsavory actions. This is another loaded topic, but the main thing to take away is the fact that we simply aren’t guaranteed a perfectly easy life that is completely void of tragedy, loss, or adversity; Jesus Himself warned us of this very truth (John 16:33). However, this does not mean that God ever fails to protect us.
As Isaiah 55:8-9 states, God’s thoughts are not our thoughts, nor are our ways His ways. So even though God does not wish for bad things to happen to us and though He is not the author of these negative situations, we do not always understand exactly why He allows us to go through them. Just because we don’t like something doesn’t mean it can’t be used to refine us in some way or allow us to better minister to others who find themselves in similar situations in life.
God has the ability and tendency to restore whatever has been lost through the actions of “evil men” so it’s really important for us to remain encouraged in the face of evil and not fail to see that God continues to protect us even when circumstances appear otherwise from our own fleshly perspective.
Temptation is rampant in today’s society. I mean, the fundamental premise behind the success of marketing campaigns is the temptation to purchase something you may or may not even need! In addition to mass consumerism (which is arguably a trivial problem), modern society often saturates the media and culture with temptations that can easily lead us into sin.
From fornication and adultery to the use of all sorts of intoxicating substances, it can be exceptionally hard for a believer to navigate the world’s landscape without tripping up here and there. Fortunately, God understands man’s tendency to gravitate towards that which tempts them. He also guarantees that He can protect us from falling into temptation if we actively and earnestly seek a way out.
Though I cannot promise that the process will be easy or resolved overnight, I can say that God is indeed faithful in helping us avoid the yoke of temptation. But even if and when we mess up, He’s always there to forgive us and let us continue on with our efforts.
At some point in our lives we are all going to run across some form of persecution. Some people may run across combative people in the workplace while others find themselves subjected to nasty comments on social media. Other people may be attacked specifically due to their religious beliefs and traditions, while others may end up being treated unjustly by their family or friends.
It hardly seems fair that believers should have to deal with such difficult circumstances, but as it is a reality of living in this world, we must learn how to tap into God’s protection against persecution.
If you allow Him, God shall embrace your heart in such a way that the unkind or abusive actions and words of others will scarcely impact you at all. In some cases, He may decide to make you completely blind and deaf to that which others do or say!
Although persecution is never a pleasant thing, remaining filled with the Word, staying in God’s presence, and becoming firmly rooted in the way God views you (opposed to how your adversaries view you) is what will protect your heart and spirit from digesting the ugliness that others spew in your direction. It will allow you to continue to exhibit the fruits of the Spirit in the face of the world’s darkness, preserving your true righteous nature.
Always remember that as believers, we are God’s light in the world. Never allow the opinions or actions of others to dim your brightness.
With persecution comes potential enemies. Even if we do not wish to view others in such a divisive manner, other people sometimes have no trouble naming you as their nemesis if given a chance to! From Internet “haters” and abusive partners to school bullies and disparaging bosses/co-workers, the world is hardly lacking in a population of people who may wish to mistreat others; we see it each and every day.
Although this is an unfortunate aspect of the world we live in, God has promised to protect us from the attacks of those who would act hatefully towards us.
Record my misery; list my tears on your scroll– are they not in your record? Then my enemies will turn back when I call for help. By this I will know that God is for me.Psalms 56:8-9 (NIV)
Even if someone does happen to seemingly “get away” with mischief against you, trust and believe, they’ve hardly gotten away with anything. God hears all, knows all, and sees all, but He also always repays all; nothing performed against His children is missed or ignored. God is also faithful to restore us after mistreatment, so we can always count on Him to fight our battles and compensate us for our losses.
If left unchecked, temptation can easily lead to falling. Falling off track from your life’s divine purpose. Falling prey to further sin. Falling away from God’s will for your life, or worst of all, falling away from God and the faith altogether. God greatly desires to preserve his fellowship and close connection with us. After all, would He have sacrificed His very own son to save us, if He didn’t? This being said, God wants to protect us from falling in any way that He possibly can.
One of the major ways that He has already done this is by providing us with the Bible, which is meant for us to read and utilize as a handbook for life. By learning and acting out His commands, we can learn to live in a manner that is pleasing to God, which makes issues such as temptation and falling much harder to fall victim to.
The more we submit to God and His ways (opposed to merely leaning on our own understanding), the softer and more sensitive our hearts will become to His desires for us. We will then view the prospect of doing anything that might cause us to become separated from God’s loving mercy–even temporarily–as an unthinkable task that we will not rush to participate in.
Danger & Calamity
All throughout time, mankind has had to fear one source of danger or another. In Biblical times, there was often the threat of famine. From the Middle Ages, The Black Death came to be known as one of the most destructive forces in the history of man. In more modern times, we’ve seen the impact of multiple wars, and even more recently, the effects of this year’s pandemic.
To sum it up, man is no stranger to danger. Whether they cook it up on their own or find themselves on Mother Nature’s hit list, mankind can fall susceptible to a dangerous condition at any given moment in time. This is why it is so necessary for believers to stay within God’s protection. Whether we see danger coming from a mile away or it takes us by surprise, we should always be able to rely on God to shield us from the worst of it by encouraging, comforting, and leading us.
Psalms 91:3-7 urges us not to fear the many things that can go wrong in our lives, most of which we may not understand and perhaps, can’t control. In conjunction with our very own faith, His mandates have the power to allow us to actually prosper and thrive in the midst of calamity. I have personally experienced and witnessed God’s divine ability to shower His children with blessings despite the world appearing to be falling apart.
Knowing that God is on your side, watching out for you really does change your perspective and allow you to better withstand the very same situations that are bewildering and devastating the people around you. It also equips you to provide comfort and encouragement to those who need it.
God loves all of us and wants us to live victorious, powerful lives. He doesn’t want us cowering in fear or shrinking back out of apprehension over what the world holds in store for us. Instead, He greatly wishes for us to freely and enthusiastically take the gift of His protection.
But once you take it, use it! Don’t just accept it one day only to completely lose track of it the moment something unexpected and scary comes your way. Pray about it. Seek His insight on it. Continue to look up scriptures that demonstrate it. Be sure to really sit with the realization and treasure it because the revelation of God’s 24-hour invisible protection truly is worth embodying. Your life will be forever changed once you do.
Whew! Isn’t it simply amazing what insight was drawn from a few simple words plastered on a deodorant container? I truly hope that this helps motivate some of you to go to God personally and strike up a conversation about the areas of your life that might need a little more protective attention. And if you’d like to strike up a conversation right here about this topic, please feel free to! I’d love to chime in with you.
(And for those who are even remotely interested, I’ve already reordered my customary floral scented deodorant (lol). I love the fact that something good came from the unscented one, but now that it has served its spiritual purpose, it has got to go.)
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