Sunday Scripture – Ready Our Horse for Battle

by Sandy Kirby Quandt

How many things in life do we; have we, achieved or accomplished without putting in the time to prepare and be ready for them? Probably not many, if I had to guess. At least I know that’s the case with me.

In school we prepare to pass tests by studying the material ahead of time. In our careers we learn the ins and outs of our job to be successful.

If we want to achieve a certain level of success in a sport, we spend hours learning the game, and practicing until it becomes second nature.

Few of us are gifted enough to pick up an instrument and play it with excellence the first time. It takes hours of practice to hit all the right notes and play without mistake.

A new craft, hobby or skill? Practice. Practice. Practice.

We practice to be ready.

The writer of Proverbs tells us we must ready our horse before we head out to battle. Even then, the victory belongs to the Lord.

If we expect to withstand Satan when he hurls his fiery darts of doubt, temptation, discouragement, and disappointment at us, we need to have our horse ready ahead of time. We need to study what God’s word tells us. We need to sink our souls into the truths within the pages of the Bible. We need to be bold and courageous when attacked, knowing our LORD is the one fighting the battle for us.

God is the one who gives the victory.

In fact, Jesus already won the war. Satan is defeated. He has no power except what God allows.

Yes. The victory belongs to the Lord, but we need to do our part and be ready for the day of battle.

How do you get ready for the battles you face each day?

Leave a comment below to share your thoughts on the subject. If you think others would appreciate reading this, please share it through the social media buttons.

The horse is made ready for the day of battle, but the victory belongs to the Lord. Proverbs 21:31 (ESV)

I wish you well.

Sandy

Please enter your email address on the form located on the right sidebar to sign up to receive posts every Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday. Thanks!

Ready Your Horse for Battle Click To Tweet

Sunday Scriptures–Hope Amid the Storms of Life

by Sandy Kirby Quandt

When Hurricane Irma formed recently, folks weren’t sure where it would go. Some dismissed it as a Florida or Atlantic coast storm, and saw no need to pay much attention to it. As the storm advanced and changed course, new areas were in its sites, and folks who before had no need to be concerned found they now needed to be prepared.

In thinking about preparing for storms several thoughts came to mind from things I’d heard said as Houston dealt with Hurricane Harvey. Be prepared. Don’t lose your humanity. Still we will rise. Stay strong.

So let’s see if any storm preparation wisdom can also be used for life preparation.

  • Be prepared. Just as we can’t predict the actual path of a hurricane until it hits, we can’t predict everything that will happen in our lives, but we can prepare ahead of time for when our lives get shaken, by keeping our anchor and hope in Jesus.
  • Don’t lose your humanity. There are a lot of people who act in inhumane ways, especially during crisis, but we don’t need to be one of them. The Golden Rule of do unto others as you would have them do unto you comes to mind.
  • Still we rise. Even though we may be knocked to the ground by circumstances in our life, we can rise above it when we reach out to the God who lifts us out of the slimy pit and sets our feet on solid ground.
  • Stay strong. It’s hard to keep going when you get beat up by the storms of life. It’s real hard. But we know that when we belong to Jesus, his Holy Spirit lives in us and greater is HE who is in us than anything the world throws at us. Our strength to stay strong doesn’t come from us. It comes from God alone.

We may not be going through a storm in our lives at this point in time but just as some people didn’t take Irma seriously until it was on their doorstep, we need to be sympathetic towards those in the eye of the storm and be watchful, knowing it could just as easily be us next time.

Leave a comment below to share your thoughts on the subject.

If you think others would appreciate reading this, please share it through the social media buttons.

Why am I so sad? Why am I so troubled? I will put my hope in God, and once again I will praise him, my savior and my God. Psalm 42:5 (GNT)

I wish you well.

Sandy

Please enter your email address on the form located on the right sidebar to sign up to receive posts every Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday. Thanks!

Hope Amid the Storms of Life Click To Tweet

Sunday Scriptures Helping Houston Flood Victims

by Sandy Kirby Quandt

Christian brothers, we want you to know how the loving-favor of God has been shown in the churches in the country of Macedonia. They have been put to the test by much trouble, but they have much joy. They have given much even though they were very poor. They gave as much as they could because they wanted to. They asked from their hearts if they could help the Christians in Jerusalem. It was more than we expected. They gave themselves to the Lord first. Then they gave themselves to us to be used as the Lord wanted. 2 Corinthians 8:1-5 (NLV)

In an email exchange with a writer friend in Harlan, Kentucky, Carlton told me a lady from Harlan organized a donation drive for the Houston flood victims. Oh, my. The truck was scheduled to leave Kentucky yesterday, September 2, 2017.

Unless you’ve been on the receiving end of such generosity you might find it hard to understand the impact that sacrificial act of the folks in Harlan has on my heart.

Kentucky and Houston are not next door neighbors by any stretch of the imagination. I just Googled it. The distance is 1,021 miles, and the predicted time to get here from there is 15 hours and 38 minutes. That is if the roads are passable and there is no traffic. Over 1,000 miles! For strangers. Amazing.

Houston has been overwhelmed by the outpouring of sacrificial love not just from fellow Houstonians and Texans, but from people all over the country.

This outpouring reminded me of the Macedonian church Paul spoke of in his second letter to the Corinthians. Macedonians were Greeks, not Jews. They were new Christians. They were people the Jerusalem Jews often looked down on. Yet … out of their poverty they gave to the Jerusalem church because of their love for God first, then their love for their fellow man.

I am not saying that you must do this, but I have told you how others have helped. This is a way to prove how true your love is. You know of the loving-favor shown by our Lord Jesus Christ. He was rich, but He became poor for your good. In that way, because He became poor, you might become rich. 2 Corinthians 8:8-9 (NLV)

Only the Sovereign LORD knows how long the recovery of the Houston area will take. He is the one who places the desire to help on people’s hearts. There is great need, but I’m aware enough of my abilities and lack of, strengths and weaknesses to know although my heart cries for those who lost so very much, I’m limited in what I can do.

As a former elementary school teacher, my heart grieves for the children who lost all their new school clothes and fresh school supplies. I grieve for the teachers who worked so hard over the summer to have their classrooms ready and inviting those first few weeks of school.

I grieve. And in my grief I make a decision. I will contribute new clothes. New shoes. New school supplies to the school district where I taught. Clear Creek Independent School District is taking donations both physical and monetary to help those students so horribly impacted by Hurricane Harvey’s destruction.

Other districts are doing the same. If this is something that interests you, here’s the CCISD link to learn more.

Leave a comment below to share your thoughts on the subject. If you think others would appreciate reading this, please share it through the social media buttons.

If a man is ready and willing to give, he should give of what he has, not of what he does not have. 2 Corinthians 8:12 (NLV)

I wish you well.

Sandy

Please enter your email address on the form located on the right sidebar to sign up to receive posts every Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday. Thanks!

Helping Houston Flood Victims Click To Tweet

Sunday Scriptures — Unsin Me

by Sandy Kirby Quandt

While preparing to lead a lesson on David’s penitential Psalm 51 this month, I read a commentator who said “purify” was the same as “unsin”. Isn’t that interesting?

Psalm 51 is David’s petition to God for forgiveness after the prophet Nathan confronted David about his adultery with Bathsheba, and murder of her husband, Uriah. In this psalm David admits his guilt, and asks for God’s forgiveness. He pleads for the restoration of his relationship with God.

David pleads with God based on knowledge of who God is.

God is gracious, loving and compassionate. David understood God is our only hope. He understood we can go before God and confess our sins, knowing God will not hurt us despite our sin.

In this psalm David didn’t rationalize his sins as we might. He did not blame others for his actions. He made no excuses. He owned his sin and bowed before God in humility, begging for God’s forgiveness.

When David asked God to purify, or unsin him, he asked for God to take David’s sin away. Cleanse him through the sacrificial blood. Blot out his guilt as if no sin occurred. David asked God to return him to fellowship with God, and change his heart and life.

Jesus Christ’s sacrificial death and shed blood paid the debt we owe for our sins. Still, God wants to see evidence of sorrow and brokenness over our sins from those who claim him as Lord. It is only through repentance of our sins we can have a restored relationship with God, and that restoration allows us to be useful to him once more.

Leave a comment below to share your thoughts on the subject. If you think others would appreciate reading this, please share it through the social media buttons.
God, be merciful to me because you are loving. Because you are always ready to be merciful, wipe out all my wrongs. Wash away all my guilt and make me clean again. Psalm 51:1-2 (NCV)
 I wish you well.

Sandy

Please enter your email address on the form located on the right sidebar to sign up to receive posts every Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday. Thanks.

Sunday Scriptures -- Unsin Me Click To Tweet

Sunday Scriptures – Friends

by Sandy Kirby Quandt

While I do believe there are random encounters in our lives, I also believe God places specific people — friends — in our lives either for us to be enriched from the relationship, or for them to be enriched through us.

With that thought in mind, I have a suggestion for us today. Let’s look back and consider those who have loved, cared for, taught, discipled, encouraged, or mentored us, and thank God for them.

Paper and pencil ready? Then, let’s go.

Who comes to mind first? Parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, siblings, spouses?

What about ministers, youth leaders, Sunday school teachers, any other person whether in an official, or unofficial capacity who helped further our Biblical knowledge and understanding?

Are there friends we’d add to the list? Co-workers? I sure hope so.

Teachers? There’d better be one or two on the list.

Our list will consist of those who helped shape and mold us into the people we are today. Of course, each of us knows life is not a bowl full of jello, despite what Knucklehead Nellie sang in South Pacific, and there have been toxic people in our lives, as well. But we’re not going to think about them today.

Nope. Today is for thanking God for those positive people in our lives who helped make us better than we were before we met them. Today is also a time to reflect and consider whether our name will show up on the positive side of anyone’s list. Hmmm.

Leave a comment below to share your thoughts on the subject. If you think others would appreciate reading this, please share it through the social media buttons.

As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend. Proverbs 27:17 (NLT)

I wish you well.

Sandy

Please enter your email address on the form located on the right sidebar to sign up to receive posts every Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday. Thanks!

Sunday Scriptures-Friends Click To Tweet

Sunday Scriptures – What to Keep

by Sandy Kirby Quandt

In the mid-1990s my mother’s house was hit by lightning and burned to the ground. She refused to leave her property in the country and move to town. Instead, she purchased a mobile home and had it placed on the property which had been in her family for generations.

One of the things Pilot and I did to help Mom after her new home arrived was go through the few belongings which survived the fire to decide what to keep and what to throw away.

Funny how what one person treasures another finds little use for.

I have a vivid recollection of Pilot and me sweating under the very hot southern Georgia summer heat, washing various kitchen items that hadn’t been consumed by the fire while my mother, aunt, and uncle sat chatting inside the air conditioned living room.

Whenever I felt something was beyond saving and should be thrown away, I had to clear it with Mom first. I’d hold the item up to the sliding glass window and Mom would shake her head yes or no. She didn’t open the slider for fear some of the a.c. would escape, I guess.

Before I washed the dull, long-bladed knife which had been around since before I was born, I knew for sure Mom would agree it needed to be tossed. The point at the end of the knife broke off long ago when Mom used it to pry something open. Spots of rust dotted both sides of the blade. Surely she would agree there was no need to keep the thing, but I knew I needed to get her approval first before I threw it away.

I held the knife to the slider. Mom shook her head no. Not satisfied with her answer, I opened the slider and explained the obvious reasons why I should not waste time washing something so useless.

“I started housekeeping with that knife” was all she said, and I proceeded to wash it shaking my head the whole time.

I’m not sure how many times Mom used that knife after that, but I do know the dull, broken, long-bladed, rust-spotted knife stayed in Mom’s kitchen until the day we moved her into the nursing home decades later.

As I pondered this memory, I thought of how sometimes we struggle with knowing what to keep and what to throw away in our beliefs. Sometimes we hold onto beliefs we learned years earlier in our Christian walk which, upon closer inspection and deeper biblical study, are no longer valid or useful.

We believe certain things because our parents believed them. We heard a preacher say something once which we kinda still believe, but aren’t really sure. Some author somewhere wrote something people talked about, so it must have some basis for truth.

Instead of relying on things we’ve heard others say, how about we search the scriptures and discover God’s truth for ourselves? What say we become students of the Word to gain a clearer understanding, and once we gain that understanding, apply God’s truth to our lives?

Instead of using a dull, broken, long-bladed, rust-spotted, incomplete understanding of the Truth, let’s determine to sharpen our learning so our knowledge will lead us to a better understanding of what to keep and what to throw away.

Is there anything you’ll admit you hang onto that should be thrown away?

Leave a comment below to share your thoughts on the subject. If you think others would appreciate reading this, please share it through the social media buttons.

Now we see things imperfectly, like puzzling reflections in a mirror, but then we will see everything with perfect clarity. All that I know now is partial and incomplete, but then I will know everything completely, just as God now knows me completely. 1 Corinthians 13:12 (NLT)

I wish you well.

Sandy

Please enter your email address on the form located on the right sidebar to sign up to receive posts every Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday. Thanks!

Sunday Scriptures - What to Keep Click To Tweet