PPN is a gathering place for women who are living ministry! We have been in existence since 1998 and have been a blessing and encouragement to women all over the world. We provide free resources such as articles by our PPN writing team, message boards and conferences but more important you'll find women sharing openly and honestly about the journey.

The importance of properly vetting an armor bearer

You saw another pastor or pastor's wife with an armor bearer and became convinced you needed one asap. When you see it working with another leader like it's supposed to, it's so appealing. Really, when it's operating correctly, who wouldn't want this arrangement?

You think of everyone surrounding you who might be suitable for this role, then you select a person and get them in place as soon as possible.  You might have even jumped at the chance when someone walked into your church and said, "I just want to share with you that my calling is that of an armor bearer." That was music to your ears, and you thought, "oh my gosh, I can't believe this!!  It's just what I've been praying for! God is so good!" You probably even told people that the answer to your prayers had come.

The problem is, they weren't properly vetted.  You just saw the load that having an armor bearer lifted from a colleague and you thought, "I need this...immediately." And you pushed forward full steam ahead.

Trust me when I say, and this is no exaggeration, that you need to make sure your armor bearer is vetted more than the candidates for president of the United States. (Isn't kingdom business as important?)

So they aren't tested properly. In time things go awry.  It's painful. If you do have the courage to share with other pastors or pastor's wives who have been through it, they give you the advice, "if this doesn't kill you it will make you stronger." They don't have any words to share that make the pain go away fast, but at least you know you're not alone.

It's a scenario repeated countless times by more leaders than even publicly talk about it. The situations are so excruciating some don't even speak of it. They just suffer in silence and swear to God they'll never be in the same position again.

I don't speak of this from some high and lofty place of expertise. I speak as a person who is still alive and stronger for it.

I've also been around long enough to know that sometimes someone is vetted properly and it still goes south! There are no guarantees.

Here's the bottom line...you do need prayer coverage. You need it now. That can't wait. But you can survive without an armor bearer, until one has been fully proven. It is not a requirement to have one, but it is a blessing.

One of the main things about a true intercessor is that if they're real they don't need to know all the details. They can pray without knowing everything, and do it quite effectively. They also don't have to be physically with you to do that. (Meaning, they don't have to be someone in your church.)

Prayer warriors are easier to find than armor bearers. Find an intercessor first.  Let an armor bearer come later. Test the intercessor(s) as well. If you find that they are pressing on you for details, you know they aren't one to be entrusted.  If someone is really in tune with God and a prayer warrior, "details" are never the important thing to them. They can pray in the spirit and cover it all! (Be very wary of a person who says, "I just need you to tell me more details of what's going on behind the scenes so I can pray for you more effectively." That's a BIG red flag!)

Ask your intercessor(s) to pray for wisdom and discernment. This is a general request but will cover you as you pray about who might be suitable for the role of armor bearer in the future.

Once you feel led of the spirit as to who God might have for you in this role, do a lot of training in the beginning as far as having them read the books Armor Bearer I and II by Terry Nance and In the Spirit of Armor Bearing Earma Brown.  Share with them about the biblical model of an armor bearer and test the waters to see if they are in line with that. If you are sensing that they are iffy, just gently back off. No need to get upset or angry or feel defeated. Consider this...what is God protecting you from?  Continue praying that God will bring someone who understands biblical armor bearing.

Proceed with care. What's the rush? 

If what you saw with another pastor and their armor bearer was real, it was not arrived at overnight and was time tested.   

Delay is better than disaster.

Time is your friend when it comes to making a decision.


Melissa said...

I am loving this series! Learning lots too! Boy is your statement "Delay is better than disaster." RIGHT ON! I have learned that lesson oh so well! So why is it we want it "right now" instead of learning the first time...sigh! Thankful for God's timing! :)

Deanna Shrodes said...

I don't know about others - can only speak for myself - but I "want it right now" because I need help. Let's face it, ministry is WORK and it's TIRING. So we grasp at help when it is offered but sometimes in the end the help will hurt us more than help us. Satan knows that we need help! It's not just God that knows that His people need help. The enemy knows it too. And he takes advantage of our need for help...