Christian Living

Spiritual Life

Grin and Grow with Kathy 07/27/16

Get Ready!


STORY: Be Prepared

When I was in second grade, I got to be in Brownies. We met at the home of a scout leader not far from the primary school. All the girls walked together as a group from the school to the house. One day, I was especially proud to be part of the group because I’d just gotten brand new shoes. A pair of two-tone lace-up oxfords. Navy and grey—really sharp.         

I nearly pranced as I strolled with the other girls, engrossed in chatter. Along the way, we faced temptation. A big hole stood where our shortcut across the field used to be. They were digging for a public swimming pool. Of course, everyone was curious—our small town rarely enjoyed such a spectacle!

Only one problem. A recent rain caused the whole area to turn into a big mud hole. What a mess. The girls were determined to get closer to the construction site and tromped through the mud. You know, I don’t remember the other girls getting muddy at all. But I remember clearly what happened next for me. I ruined my brand new shoes because I got off the path to my destination and took the shortcut with the other girls.

Once I arrived at the Brownies meeting, my mom was there waiting. Did I mention she was one of the leaders? Unhappy with my lack of wisdom, she made me stay outside cleaning up my shoes while the other girls worked on their Plaster of Paris project. And I had to wear those stained shoes the rest of the year—until I finally outgrew them.

So much for my Girl Scout motto helping me that day . . . Be Prepared.

If I had been prepared, I would have chosen to be a leader that day, and not a follower. I would have told them the importance of not wavering from the path in which we were instructed to go. I would have looked ahead and realized the mess the mud would make, not just for my shoes, but for my life that day.

Of course, I was only a little second grader. But those of us reading this devo-study are grown people, who should know better when it comes to getting into messes. Wisdom tells us, “Apply the Girl Scout motto to our Christian walk.” Be Prepared.

STUDY: Advance Planning and Preparation is Key

These verses have to do with a certain point of time in biblical history, but we can still learn from the principles here that it’s important to be prepared. Our trials and attacks might not be the same kind of battles they faced, but our modern-day challenges can derail us from God’s best for our lives.

Enemy Readiness

Afterward the prophet said to King Ahab, “Get ready for another attack. Begin making plans now, for the king of Aram will come back next spring.” (1 Kings 20:22 NLT)

  • Assume another attack is coming. How did the prophet tell King Ahab to get ready? Why are plans important?
  • What do you see when you look at next spring? How can you prepare now to be ready for then?

 Get ready; be prepared! Keep all the armies around you mobilized, and take command of them. (Ezekiel 38:7 NLT)

  • What can you keep mobilized that will help you stay ready?
  • In what area is God leading you to be more prepared?

Emergency Readiness

Get ready for the siege! Store up water! Strengthen the defenses! Go into the pits to trample clay, and pack it into molds, making bricks to repair the walls. (Nahum 3:14 NLT)

  • The theme of this verse seems to be to do the work, when?
  • Readiness takes work and it also takes being obedient before knowing the end of the story. If you wait until the time of need, it’s too late.
  • Again—when is it time to do the work of readiness?

Engaged Readiness

At that time I gave this command to the tribes that would live east of the Jordan: “Although the Lord your God has given you this land as your property, all your fighting men must cross the Jordan ahead of your Israelite relatives, armed and ready to assist them.” (Deuteronomy 3:18 NLT)

  • Look at the last six words of this verse. What pops out at you?
  • How can you be armed?
  • As you pray for direction, who is God asking you to be ready to assist?

STEPS: Plan the Work, then Work the Plan

  1. Be prepared to let go of expectations, but not of hope. Unrealistic expectations hold you back from accomplishing what God wants you to achieve. Hope propels you forward.
  2. Be prepared to learn. Knowledge equips you with wisdom to make the right decisions.
  3. Be prepared to listen to others. You don’t have to go it alone.
  4. Be prepared to look for others to assist. It’s not all about you.
  5. Be prepared to laugh. Don’t be so serious while in pursuit of the goal that you forget to enjoy the journey. (That’s why this blog is called “Grin and Grow with Kathy.”)
  6. Be prepared to lunge in to the deep end. One reason you need to be ready is because life doesn’t happen in the shallow end. It will be a challenge. You can float. Tread water. Or swim to the other side!

Copyright 2016 Kathy Carlton Willis. Used by permission.

Give Now