Sunday Scriptures — Friendship

by Sandy Kirby Quandt

Recently I was thinking about friends I knew during my high school years. Two in particular stood out because of what they wrote to me.

Karen and I were best friends. You’d call us BFFs today. We shared much of ourselves with each other during our senior year of high school and vowed to stay in touch, despite the fact our roads after graduation would take us down different paths. Unfortunately, we never saw each other again once we hugged good-bye the day we held our diplomas in our hands.

While in Senior English, we studied Jean Anouilh’s play, Becket, about King Henry II and Thomas Becket’s friendship. We both fell in love with it, got mad at Henry for his treatment of his friend, and wept for Becket.

I don’t need to see my yearbook to remember the inscription Karen wrote…To Becket, from Henry. I was humbled she considered me a person who stood up for what I felt was right, and  who didn’t compromise my beliefs.

A friend I met at church camp signed his letters using a phrase from Charles Dicken’s Great Expectations. Referencing the conversation between Joe and Pip, Paul always wrote, “Ever the best of friends.”

Paul and I ran into each other several times through the years at various conventions but eventually, lost contact. Yet I know, were we to meet today we’d still be ever the best of friends.

As a writer, books are important to me. I enjoy reading them. I enjoy writing them. While Becket and Great Expectations are classics, and I appreciate them both, there is one book that is far superior, and has many more memorable lines in it.

Yep. I’m talking about the Bible.

So I’m wondering…

Do we include scripture references when we speak or write to others, the way my friends included literary works when they wrote me? Do our friends know the stories from the Bible which thrill our hearts? The ones that bring us joy? The ones that reduce us to tears? If we quoted a verse, would they know it’s importance to us?

Jesus is our true BFF. He shares our hurts, our joys, our failures and our successes with us each and every day. He will never harm or destroy us the way King Henry did Becket. Jesus will never abandon or reject us the way Pip did Joe. Jesus wants us to keep in touch.

Our Savior loves us with an undying love. He wants us to stand up for what is right. He longs for us to be ever the best of friends.

Are there friends from high school you are still in contact with? If you mentioned something from those days, would you feel like you were there all over again?

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

 The Lord appeared to us in the past, saying: “I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with unfailing kindness. Jeremiah 31:3 (NIV)

I wish you well.

Sandy

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The Real How-to Book

By Sandy Kirby Quandt

Some of you may remember the plethora of self-help books that flooded book shelves in the early 80s. Got a problem? There’s a book with a fix for that.

A book I purchased at the time was The Messies Manual. When searching for links I noticed Messies has been updated. Guess there are a lot of messy people out there. 😉

While I purchased this book with every intention of reading, highlighting, and putting into practice the wisdom held within their pages, I didn’t.

I managed to get to page 96 before I placed the book in the drawer of my nightstand…and left it there until today. I have pages underlined up to the section on appliances.

I underlined Don’t forget to vacuum the refrigerator coils regularly…the refrigerator has coils?

Remember to clean the drip pan under the refrigerator regularly…seriously?

Who was I kidding? Sissy may have done that, but not me.

My house keeping skills, or lack of, are dismal, and believe me I used to beat myself up over that fact many a day. I tried. Man, I tried, but I never seemed to get it right. Over the years I’ve learned to let it go. Partly because I truly don’t have the energy or strength for it anymore.

There was a time, however, when my house looked pretty spiffy. I threw myself into scrubbing and scouring. Picking up and putting away. That was during a very unhappy time in my life and I falsely believed looking good on the outside was the important thing. When on the inside, I was completely falling apart.

While my hope in buying that how-to book was to make necessary changes, I found the real changes that needed to be made were in my relationship to God and how he viewed me as his child. I needed to see me as Jesus saw me.

I needed to beware of what I allowed to define me.

My worth isn’t wrapped up in a clean house or any other earthly thing. My worth comes from the fact I am someone Jesus loved enough to take all my sin upon his sinless self.

I’m worthy enough for Jesus to die a horrific death on the cross to pay the penalty for the debt I owed but could never pay.

And so are you.

It doesn’t matter if we are a messy, or not. It doesn’t matter how much dust, or sin, has accumulated under our bed. It doesn’t matter if cobwebs collect in every corner of the house reminding us of our failures, like a scene of Miss Havisham’s house in Charles Dickens’, Great Expectations.

It doesn’t matter if we fall as long as we fall at the feet of Jesus.

There is one how-to book that can truly help us make the changes we need to make. It’s called the Bible.

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.

Remember my words with your whole being. Write them down and tie them to your hands as a sign; tie them on your foreheads to remind you. Teach them well to your children, talking about them when you sit at home and walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Deuteronomy 11:18-19 (NCV)

I wish you well.

Sandy

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