Sunday Scriptures — God Provides

Isaiahby Sandy Kirby Quandt

Perhaps you’ve heard of dramatic stories where God provided for someone’s need when the situation seemed hopeless.  No food in the cupboard and a bag of groceries appear on the doorstep. The need for a transplant donor and one becomes available just in time. Someone knows someone who knows someone and a job is secured before the last penny from the last paycheck has been spent.

While you may not have been a participant in anything you’d call dramatic, I’m sure if you look back, you’ll see God’s hand always present, providing in ways only he can.

A time I feel for certain God provided for my parents, brother and me was when we were traveling back to the States from Panama after visiting Sissy and Chief in the Canal Zone. The Miami, Florida hotel clerk informed my dad there were no available rooms. It was late, Dad and the rest of us were tired after our flight, it wasn’t the first hotel we’d tried to find a room at, and the prospects weren’t looking too good.

As my dad turned away, the hotel clerk called him back. Seems he just so happened to have a room left after all.

Now I know, finding a hotel room does not rank up there with receiving a transplant donor, but the point I’d like to make is we need to keep our eyes open to see God’s hand at work in our lives. He doesn’t always work in dramatic ways, but he is always at work. And don’t you think he’d appreciate it if we thanked him for the things we consider small as well as the things we consider big?

What has God provided that left you saying, “Wow!”?

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And this same God who takes care of me will supply all your needs from his glorious riches, which have been given to us in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:19 (NLT)

I wish you well.

Sandy

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Praise God

by Sandy Kirby Quandt

Which do you find easier … praise God when everything is going well, or when things are falling apart?

Is it easier to shout out, “Yay, God!” during the times of absolute happiness, rather than when our hearts are crushed and broken?

For most of us, I would guess it’s easier to praise when things are going along without a hitch, than it is when we’ve hit the bumps of life.

I’d also have to say I find it easier to sing hallelujah to God when the path is smooth, than when it is dark and troubled.

But that doesn’t mean I shouldn’t shout out my praises. It’s just harder to do. Not impossible.

Because he is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow, God doesn’t change. He’s still the God who spoke the world into being and allowed his son to die a horrible death so we could live with him forever.

He is the God worthy of our hallelujahs no matter what the situation.

In the 23rd Psalm, David wrote that even when he walked through the valley of the shadow of death, God remained with David and he had everything he needed.

We can say the same thing.

Even on our darkest days, God remains with us and provides what we need.

When we turn our eyes to the one who loves us with an everlasting love, and trust him to work all things out for his glory, knowing nothing reaches us he didn’t plan or permit, our praise may come out in halting, stammering cries, but it will come out.

Still we will praise him.

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The Lord is my Shepherd. I will have everything I need. He lets me rest in fields of green grass. He leads me beside the quiet waters. He makes me strong again. He leads me in the way of living right with Himself which brings honor to His name. Yes, even if I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will not be afraid of anything, because You are with me. You have a walking stick with which to guide and one with which to help. These comfort me. You are making a table of food ready for me in front of those who hate me. You have poured oil on my head. I have everything I need. For sure, You will give me goodness and loving-kindness all the days of my life. Then I will live with You in Your house forever. Psalm 23 (NLV)

I wish you well.

Sandy

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Sunday Scriptures – Immeasurably More

At the end of February, I had the opportunity to visit Tuskegee, Alabama, and research the Tuskegee Airmen of World War II archives, at both Tuskegee University, and the National Park Service.

During the trip, there were bumps…Shields Up!

There were blips...The Battle is the LORD’s.

And there was the incredible gift of not just a piece of pie, but the entire bakery…More Pie, Please.

Major grace-drops.

Though there were detours to my plans and unexpected events, the thing that remained constant – besides the eggs and sausage at the hotel breakfast – is the fact God is, and always will be, in control. Amen?

God is sovereign. He goes before us and levels mountains and fills in valleys to make our paths smooth. None can stand against our LORD. His grace is all sufficient.

The things we may view as aggravations and annoyances, God can use to show us his power. To prove, once again, he is working in our lives. We just need to keep looking for his hand at work, and praise him. Not just when he shows up and shows out, but when he speaks in quiet ways, as well.

Even when the lessons God is teaching us may be hard, disrupt our plans, or cause us discomfort, I’m discovering we need to look at them as lessons to be learned. Which hopefully, we will allow to draw us closer to Jesus.

What are your thoughts on the subject?

Now glory be to God, who by his mighty power at work within us is able to do far more than we would ever dare to ask or even dream of—infinitely beyond our highest prayers, desires, thoughts, or hopes. May he be given glory forever and ever through endless ages because of his master plan of salvation for the Church through Jesus Christ. Ephesians 3:20-21 (TLB)

I wish you well.

Sandy

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Strength for the Journey

The Old Testament prophet, Elijah, had just won an awe-inspiring victory over the false prophets of Baal on Mount Carmel. (1 Kings 18:20-40) He proved Jehovah God was the only true and living God.

If Elijah’d been a surfer, this would have been his long ride of a lifetime.

Epic!

If that were the case, and it surely wasn’t, I believe Elijah might have pumped his fists high into the air, let out a hoot, and stepped off his board, into the frothy liquid, to relish the unbelievable accomplishment. But Elijah wasn’t a surfer, and he didn’t pump his fist.

It seems he may not even have relished the accomplishment. At least not after he heard what Queen Jezebel had to say to him. “You killed my prophets, and now I swear by the gods that I am going to kill you by this time tomorrow night.” (1Kings 19:2 TLB)

Yikes!

So, a depressed Elijah fled for his life. He prayed to God that he might die, rationalizing, “I’m gonna’ die sometime, may as well be now.” But that wasn’t God’s plan for Elijah. (You can read more about Elijah’s final, whirlwind moments, in 2 Kings Chapter 2.)

Ever felt like Elijah? Ever felt like saying, what’s the use? Why keep on trying? I’m doing everything I know how, but it’s not working. It’s hopeless.

I’ve felt that way before, and I figure some of you have, as well. That’s when the door to depression is flung wide open. That’s when the truth of who we are in God’s eyes gets clouded. That’s when we curl up into a ball on the floor, rock back and forth, and pray for release.

More importantly, that’s when God steps in, just like he did with Elijah, and provides strength for the remainder of our journey.

We aren’t forgotten. We aren’t abandoned. We aren’t forsaken. Every single day, we have the strength we need to put one foot in front of the other, through the power of the Holy Spirit living in those of us who claim Jesus as their Savior.

Feeling like Elijah? Hold onto the hope we have in Christ. Take in the strength he provides for the journey, and never give up.

He (Elijah) looked around and there beside his head was some bread baked on hot stones and a jar of water! So he ate and drank and lay down again. Then the angel of the LORD came again and touched him and said, ‘Get up and eat some more, or the journey ahead will be too much for you.’ So he got up and ate and drank, and the food gave him enough strength to travel forty days and forty nights to Mount Sinai, the mountain of God. 1 Kings 19:6–8 NLT

I wish you well.

Sandy

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