July 23, 2014

Have We Been Warned to Flee America?

Have We Been Warned to Flee America

We normally prepare for possible future events. For Christians, those possibilities should always include the biblically prophetic. That said, if you knew that a major, nation-changing, prophecy-fulfilling event were to occur in your lifetime, an event that would forever change America and alter the course of the world, would it change how you prepare?

Trudee and I recently read a book called The End of America. It is my opinion that every Christian should read this book and do their own study, pray on it and see if they come to the same conclusion as the author John Price has.

I have received many emails over the years, commenting on how America is not mentioned in the Bible. I usually say something to the effect that many nations are not mentioned, that for America to be unmentioned only means that it’s not a key player in the end times. When I look at the world as it is today, I wonder what would it take for the world’s only superpower to be absent? One thing I have considered is that something would have to be done to remove the USA as a defender of Israel from the armies and allies of Gog and Magog. This book offers a very plausible explanation.

The book covers so much information that there is no way I can touch on everything. I will cover key points and give my take on a few things. I also want to say that while I do read the Bible every day, I did not attend seminary and have an intermediate level of understanding. For this reason, I have a favor to ask; join with me in a study of this subject. In the words of Ronald Reagan, “Trust but verify.” I think it is prudent to study the topic John Price brings to light. While Mr. Price has done most of the legwork, it’s absolutely essential that we all verify through study and prayer how this translates to our lives.

I don’t want this study to go on in the comments of this blog post. It would get too cluttered and hard to follow. I have created a new section on the Prepared Christian forum, called “Have We Been Warned to Flee America?”. It requires people to sign up and I have to manually approve each membership. This makes things a little slower to get rolling, but it is the only way I can keep the spammers and hackers from posting their filth. Your membership will not be approved immediately, but I will be keeping a close eye on the forum this week to approve memberships. If I reject your membership, please send me an email to let me know. I have roughly 50 spammers creating accounts every day and sometimes I reject a legitimate membership by accident. You will need to log into the forum to be able to see the “Have We Been Warned to Flee America?” forum, once logged in you will find it under the Preparedness forum. You can get to the forum by clicking on the link above.

Mr. Price offers a lot of material on his site, the EndofAmericaBook.com. One item he offers is called PROPHECY 101: A Brief History of Prophetic Interpretation and another is Hebrew and Greek Annotation about the Daughter of Babylon verses.. He also offers a study guide, which I didn’t know about until we were almost finished with the book, that he gives away. He has given me permission to host a copy, which you can download by clicking here. If you need the study guide as another file type, please email me at Chris (at) preparedchristian (dot) net, and I will take care of it.

I have asked John Price if he would be willing to answer questions on the blog post and on the forum. He has agreed to do so. If you have a question for him, please ask and he may answer.

The Kindle version of The End of America is available for $.99 and should be affordable for most of us. You don’t need a Kindle to read kindle books, Amazon offers free Kindle software that allows you to read it on your PC. Click this link to download a free copy of the kindle software.

Here are some things to keep in mind as you read this article: I am a skeptical by nature. I like to have things proven to me. I like to see how people come to their decisions. When people make claims about the Bible or prophesy I scrutinize them even more. There are just too many false teachers who want to tickle ears to take anything on face value without scripture to support it. Mr. Price gives scripture to back up his findings. It is up to us to verify and see if we come to the same conclusion. He also gives several verses from the Koran when he explains the “religion of peace”.

 
The End of America

The book starts off looking at prophesy, specifically those dealing with the end times. It touches on Israel, and the timing of the Jews again entering the Holy Land in the form of their own nation, Israel.

Mr. Price explains that Israel getting its homeland back as well as the revived Roman Empire (the European Union) are two key prophesy events pointing to us being in the end times.
 

The Religion of Peace

In chapter two, entitled “The Religion of Peace”, Mr. Price gives a brief history of Islam. He follows the history of Muhammad and the creation of Islam, following the roots of Jihad through Wahabism, which is the dominant form of Islam in Saudi Arabia. What the Wahabists believe is explained and many examples of worldwide terrorism are given.

Muslim End times prophesies are given. I have studied these a bit from other sources as well. When you consider them along with the Christian End times prophesies, it is as if you’re looking at two sides of the same coin. The Twelfth Imam or the Mahdi is their Messiah, and is a great political and military leader. Mr. Price makes the connection, calling the Twelfth Imam the Antichrist.

The Caliphate is also spoken of. The Caliph is the united religious leader of all of Islam. It was abolished in 1924 by Turkey. However, there have been calls from some countries to have it restored. This would greatly help in establishing a one world religion.

 
The Mystery and Identity of the Daughter of Babylon

I have received emails about the possibility of the United States being the Daughter of Babylon. It is a topic that has interested me but is something I haven’t had time to research. There are several prophesies from both the Old and New Testaments listed, giving the Greek definition of some words to better understand the verse. In fact, here are (–LINK Hebrew and Greek Annotation about the Daughter of Babylon verses.–) (Warning: There are 223 verses on 69 pages).

There have been many claims as to what the Daughter of Babylon is. I have heard claims of the ancient city of Babylon, Rome and even the Catholic Church or New York City. Mr. Price gives 23 clues and the scriptures for each as to what the Daughter of Babylon is. Here are just a few:

• Is the Daughter of Babylon the same as the Mother of Babylon?
• The Hammer of the Whole Earth
• A Latter Day Nation
• A Nation of Wealth and Luxury
• You who live on many waters
• Center of World Commerce
• The Great Voice
• They are Mad Upon Your Idols
• Where other Nations Gather
• She Has Been Proud Against the Lord

The above list is only 10 of the 23 clues. Mr. Price goes into these clues in detail, explaining why he believes America fits the description as the Daughter of Babylon, and why these verses rule out other countries and entities. These clues are very helpful, as is his explanation of how various scriptures just can’t be applied to certain places like ancient Babylon or Rome. If you believe that the Daughter of Babylon is in fact ancient Babylon, Rome or some other place or entity, please read his book and see how his arguments stack up.

 
How Does God View The Daughter of Babylon?

In this chapter the immorality of the Daughter of Babylon is mentioned, they are:

• Abortion
• Pornography
• Adultery/Divorce
• Same Sex Marriage
• Violence
• Drug Culture
• Witchcraft
• Sumptuous, Self-Indulgent Lifestyles
• Other Abomination

 
Summarization of the Future of America

This article is getting a little long, so I am going to summarize a few key points that need to be made. Mr. Price mentions a book called Eye to Eye, Facing the Consequences of Dividing Israel. This book lists several times over the last twenty years where America has tried to force Israel to give up land and explains how God has judged us each and every time, usually within a single day. These are natural disasters, from Katrina to the economic crash in 2008. I’ve heard these claims before and was skeptical, but when we ask Israel to give up land twenty times and each of those twenty times, we face historic weather events and economic ruin, well, let’s just say I’m more of a believer now.

There is prophesy starting in Ezekiel 38, where Gog and Magog along with a host of other nations attack Israel. I’m not going to go into great detail, but Mr. Price describes how Russia, Iran and many other nations may attack Israel, and how America will turns its back on her, ignoring the treaty we’ve had for many years.

Because of this, God curses America, lifting the protection He has provided for so many years. Mr. Price goes on to explain that the Jihadists have asked for and have been granted permission from their clerics to use nuclear weapons on Americans. They have also attained a nuclear Fatwa, which is added as attachment A to The End of America. He also explains that Jihadists could seek nuclear weapons from Pakistan, Iran, North Korea, Libya and Russia.

In Revelation 18:8 we’re told:

“Therefore in one day her plagues will overtake her: death, mourning and famine. She will be consumed by fire, for mighty is the Lord God who judges her.”

Mr. Price explains how from scripture he believes that multiple nuclear detonations on key American cities including:

• America’s national capitol – Washington DC
• America’s financial capital – New York
• America’s major oil refineries
• America’s cultural pollution capitol – Hollywood, Las Vegas, Los Angeles
• For good measure the major centers of commerce, Chicago, Seattle, Houston, Atlanta, Miami, Boston and so on.

As he points out it, it would take more than just a few nukes to bring down America, so he believes there will be an EMP as well. While true terrorist groups don’t have the missile capabilities to put a nuclear tipped missile into the American ionosphere, they could purchase missiles easier than they could the nuclear bomb to arm it. Both could be purchased from countries that are not friendly to America and, as I have covered in other articles, the nuke doesn’t need to be launched from a country thousands of miles away. They could load the nuke on a specially fitted cargo ship and launch it a hundred miles off of the coast of the USA. He says that this could result in millions of deaths during and immediately following the attack. Those not killed will face radiation sickness and a lack of food.

Mr. Price spends a chapter explaining that God demands an accounting for innocent blood. He notes that in the 38 years since abortion was legalized, there have been roughly 700,000 homicidal deaths, and in that same timespan there have been roughly 53,000,000 (or 75 babies for every person) murdered.

He makes note that God says in Numbers 25:33:

“Do not pollute the land where you are. Bloodshed pollutes the land, and atonement cannot be made for the land on which blood has been shed, except by the blood of the one who shed it.”

He makes the point that because of the innocent blood of millions of babies, God demands an accounting and we could lose just as many American lives.
 

Warning to Leave the Daughter of Babylon

Mr. Price says there are nine separate warnings to flee and lists the verses for them. Seven of them to Christians and nine to Jews, commanding His people to flee the Daughter of Babylon.

He also explains that the “religion of peace” will give the rest of the world a warning to accept Islam or suffer the same fate as America. Mr. Price explains how Christians will be executed in the last days and asks who beheads people in the modern day? That’s correct, the “religion of peace”. Mr. Price then gives a brief history explaining why Muslims behead people.

We are given a history of Christians and Jews immigrating to other countries to flee religious persecution. Mr. Price spends a chapter covering what a Christian might look for in a new homeland.

John Price is not a prepper. In emailing, he said he sees it as something contrary to following Gods command to flee. I happen to disagree with John. I believe that God has called many of us to prepare. Even if I come to same conclusion Mr. Price has, deciding to leave America, I will still prep where ever I live. I’m not preparing just for the downfall of America, I prepare for the myriad of things that can and do happen every day, up to and including unemployment, floods and wildfires.

 
My Take:

Trudee and I spent a lot of time talking about the possibility of America being the Daughter of Babylon, and the implications from it. I knew early on that this was something I wanted to talk to all of you about. To be honest, while I think my Biblical knowledge is above average, it isn’t deep enough to answer the important questions I have. I know I need to study this material and I am hoping some of you will be willing to read the book and study it along with me.

If we come to a different conclusion than Mr. Price did, we’ve only wasted a small bit of time and will gain Biblical knowledge. If, however, we come to the same conclusions, there are some very, very big implications we must face.

I love America. I thank God frequently for the privilege of being born here. The thought of moving to another country saddens and overwhelms me. I honestly have a hard time wrapping my mind around it. However, while I have a very hard time hearing God’s voice in the moment, there have been two times where I have clearly known He was telling me this: “Do not put your love of country before me!” The first time was a few years ago, the second was while reading this book.

Are we considering moving? We want to be obedient. If further prayer and study tells us that the USA is in fact the daughter Babylon, yes, we’ll consider it or more.

Trudee and I were talking about the implications of this book and decided that we first needed to make sure we came to the same conclusions after study and prayer. We decided if we came to the same conclusion, we had to make the choice to leave or face the coming destruction. I felt convicted. When the God of the Universe tells you to do something, there isn’t an “if you want to” attached to it. It is a command!

If the scriptures on the Daughter of Babylon and the commands to leave are, in fact, aimed at America, the commands are no different than the commands God gave the Jews when taking them to the Promised Land. Remember what happened when they disobeyed?

I have studied prophecy and I have spent considerable time researching, thinking about and writing on what effect various threats may impact America. I have seen quotes by numerous American leaders, some in very high positions saying that it is not “if”, but “when” America is attacked with nuclear weapons (conventional or dirty bombs).

I believe it is very possible, if not probable that nuclear weapons could be smuggled in via ship, as only 3% of cargo is inspected. They could also be brought in through our ridiculously porous borders. I also know that EMP is a very real concern and is something our government is worried about.

There are some consequences to a nuclear attack that were not mentioned. The main one is the damage to nuclear power plants. They have generators that will run the cooling systems, with enough diesel to run for two weeks. If, after those two weeks, the power is not restored or more diesel brought in, we will see multiple Fukushima’s all over the country.
 

Closing

I hope you’ll get a copy of this book and join me in the forum to study and pray over these issues. If you join in reading this book and the study of the related scripture, please continually be asking for the Fathers guidance and wisdom for us as a group.

 
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Christmas Spirit

Spirit of Christmas

This is the time of year that was chosen to celebrate the birth of Jesus. As the song goes, “born is the king of Israel.” God chose to send us His only son, giving us the gift of eternal life. I think that satan uses everything in his power to cloud that, and to take the focus away from it.

We cling to traditions, both secular and religious. We get hung up on what presents we’re going to give and receive. For some, Christmas might have just lost its luster. Maybe that’s because we hear the same songs and we see the same shows on TV year after year.

Others might say that Christmas has been commercialized or that the time of year that we celebrate the birth of our savior isn’t when He was actually born. Both of these are valid claims, but if we’re not careful we can unintentionally take away from the awe of this gift.

Please don’t misunderstand, traditions are important, the receiving of and giving gifts is not a bad thing. But they can and do take over as the reason for the celebrating. I was guilty of this for many years. Then I went to the other extreme, being frustrated that people refused to say “Merry Christmas” and said “Happy Holidays” instead. I wasn’t a total bahumbugger, but gave scrooge a run for his money.

Now I try not to take on how others deal with Christmas. It is between them and God. If they say “Happy Holidays” instead of “Merry Christmas”, that’s ok. But I’m also not going to worry if they’re offended by my wishing them a “Merry Christmas”.

There were some traditions over the years that caused stress, so I stopped doing them. I realize that some traditions are incredibly important to some people but Christmas is supposed to be joyful! If there are some traditions that cause stress and ruin the spirit of the celebration, pray about and consider stopping them.

I treat Christmas like I do Veterans Day. I am thankful for the men and women who have served our country every day. I often thank vets for their service throughout the year, but on Veterans Day I make it a point to tell vets “Thank you!” Likewise, I am grateful for the gift of Christ every day. I praise Him throughout the year, giving thanks for all of my blessings every day. On Christmas, I make a point to thank God for Immanuel, God with us!

Merry Christmas everyone!
 
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A Preparedness and Life Lesson From Noah

A Preparedness and Life Lesson From Noah

I’ve covered Scripture Related To Preparedness already, but I have decided to take a deeper look at some of them. Today I want take a deeper look at Noah. Starting in Genesis 6:8, we’re told that Noah found favor with God, that he was the only blameless person on earth. God would spare Noah and his family, but would destroy every other living creature except for those that would be on the Arc.

A reader once told me she believed that God was calling us Prepared Christians to be many Noah’s going out to the world; and I believe that to be truth. I know God called me to prepare, as I believe He has called many of you and many others who are unaware of this blog to prepare as well.
 
 
Build the Arc

In Genesis 6:14 God gave Noah a task:

(14)“Build a large boat from cypress wood and waterproof it with tar, inside and out. Then construct decks and stalls throughout its interior. (15) Make the boat 450 feet long, 75 feet wide, and 45 feet high. (16) Leave an 18-inch opening below the roof all the way around the boat. Put the door on the side, and build three decks inside the boat—lower, middle, and upper.”

So Noah has to find suitable lumber, fell it, mill it, haul it to the build site and then build this huge arc that was 1.5 football fields long. That’s about half as long as a modern day aircraft carrier!
 
 
Gather the Animals

Genesis 6:19 tells us:

“19 Bring a pair of every kind of animal—a male and a female—into the boat with you to keep them alive during the flood. (20) Pairs of every kind of bird, and every kind of animal, and every kind of small animal that scurries along the ground, will come to you to be kept alive”

At least he didn’t have to round them all up! Can you imagine lions, bears, snakes and all of the other dangerous animals you have lived your life fearing showing up? Can you imagine the noise and the smell? Do you think God tamed them so they were not predator nor prey while they waited for the Arc to be built and for the water to recede after the flood?
 
 
Gather the Food

Genesis 6:21 we’re told:

“And be sure to take on board enough food for your family and for all the animals.”

Imagine that! Noah had to store enough food for a minimum of eight people; Noah, his wife, his three sons and their wives (it doesn’t say if any of Noah’s sons had more than one wife so it could have been more than eight) and all of the animals, for an unknown amount of time! We’re told that it took ten and a half months for the flood waters to mostly dry but Noah didn’t know that. This food storage is all without a Costco, freeze drying, canning or any other modern method of food storage! They had to grow it, hunt it, gather it, and preserve it all by themselves! Oh, and they still had to build the arc and tend the animals.
 
 
Noah’s Shoes

Let’s not forget that Noah was also 600 years old! Have you ever thought about being in Noah’s shoes? I wonder what he did for a living. Knowing God’s sense of humor, Noah was probably a shepherd who had never ridden in a boat or built anything in his life. I wonder if Noah ever felt overwhelmed. I wonder if his family supported him. I wonder if there were days he felt like keeping his 600 year old back in bed.

All the while Noah knew God’s plan to wipe out the majority of the human race. Everyone Noah had ever laid eyes on, except for his family, would perish. Do you think that grieved him? Yes they brought it upon themselves, but to know their fate and to listen to their begging day after day as the rain rose had to take its toll on Noah.
 
 
What Can We Learn?

I don’t know about you, but when I break down each of the tasks given to Noah, it sounds near impossible. God has a history of asking unlikely people to do big things, and then working through them to complete the task.

With todays advanced technology, our modern tools, 24/7 stores and a large budget, the tasks set before Noah would still be near impossible. I can’t imagine how much harder they were when Noah built the Arc. The only explanation is God.

I mentioned above that I believed some of you reading this were called by God to prepare. Some of you have been doing so for many years and others have just started. Some have a support network in your families and some of you are the only one in your families, who may or may not be against you.

Some days you might feel overwhelmed with everything you have left to do, so much left to prepare for. God knows what you have left to do. He knows exactly what is coming and if He has called you to prepare, He may just work through you as well! To be clear, the story of Noah can be a life lesson as well. Whenever life has you feeling overwhelmed, just remember to share His yoke.

Mathew 19:26: Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”

 
 
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Spiritual Preparedness

anchoredtoChrist

Since starting the blog my goal has been to bring a Christian worldview to preparedness, to show Christians that preparedness isn’t a sin and is, in fact, it’s very biblical.

Most articles are about preparedness. I wouldn’t say this means faith took a backseat. This is mainly because I have covered all of the areas of the Bible that I know of that pertain to preparedness. Today the tables turn, and preparedness, while still involved, IS going to take a back seat to faith.

I’ve put in a lot of road time over the last month, some of which was spent in prayer and some enjoying God’s creation. I also spent some of that time listening to audio books, one of which some of you have recommended; The Harbinger by Jonathan Cahn. I’m not done with the Harbinger, so this isn’t a review. In truth, it is only part of the reason for me writing this article. Before I go any further, I want to say that this isn’t Chris on his high horse judging anyone. What I have to say in this article goes just as much for me as anyone else.

I’m not a prophet, just a watchman on the wall. That being said I am not trying to be alarmist either, but I am concerned that something is on the horizon that will require us to be anchored in Christ. I am reminded of the parable of the sower. Jesus tells of a farmer who spread seed. Much of the seed perished for various reasons and only the seed that fell on fertile soil flourished.

Anyone who knows anything about gardening knows that you have to pamper soil to ensure it stays fertile, adding compost and mulch, as well as making sure it’s watered. My point is, just because you were in fertile soil when you took the seed of faith and you grew in Christ, that doesn’t mean you can rest. No, you must tend the soil, feed it and protect it. If you don’t, the weeds can come back in and choke out any growth or pests can damage it.

 

Training

Professional athletes spend a good portion of their lives training for a season that is a few short months long, in a sport they’ll only be able to compete professionally in for a limited amount of years. Some pro-boxers train for months for one night. As Paul said in 1 Corinthians 9:24-25

“Don’t you realize that in a race everyone runs, but only one person gets the prize? So run to win!
All athletes are disciplined in their training. They do it to win a prize that will fade away, but we do it for an eternal prize.”

Are you living to win the race? I hate to admit it, but I’m not. My walk with Christ is stronger than it was in my past. I am in the word daily, I pray, but I still stumble far more than I care to admit. Let’s face it, if a pro athlete had to be in training all year, year after year, I don’t think we would have as many sports teams.

I think that modern day Christians in America and other developed nations might have a harder time with their walk than early Christians. Sure early Christians in the first church were persecuted but they wore it as a badge of honor. Modern day Christians are surrounded by temptation on the internet, TV, Radio, not to mention every-day life. The first church consisted of people who lived with Christ for three years and people who grew to know those eleven. We’re some 2,000 years removed and we only have what we read in the texts, published throughout those 2,000 years. What we all have in common is the indwelling of Christ and the Holy Spirit. Like I mentioned above, we must tend the soil to keep it fertile, lest we let the thistle in and it choke out the growth. When that happens, we allow the quieting of that still small voice and the indwelling of Christ is muted.

Make no mistake, this doesn’t mean we get an easy out. On the contrary, this means we have to be more aggressive at tending the soil, at keeping our walk with Christ as close to Him as we can. I have heard many people say that there is nothing we can do, Christ has done it all. This is not completely true; He made it possible for us to be redeemed to the Father, but we still have to, as Paul said, “run to win”.

 

The Danger

As I mentioned above, I feel like there is something on the horizon that will require us to be anchored in Christ. There are a couple of reasons why I think this is important. First if we are firmly affixed to something we are not likely to be shaken from it. I have witnessed people who, when faced with something terrible, lose faith and turn from God. I had a friend who, at one time, was planted in fertile soil. His wife left him and he started to lose faith. He quit tending the soil. He then was diagnosed with colon cancer and the thistle took over. In the end, he blamed God and was bitter, not wanting to talk at all about faith.

Persecution is also something that may drive others from the faith. We in America are very lucky, as persecution only rarely happens. The following is a story from the ADF, the Alliance Defending Freedom. The article is called “The Longest Night”.. It is a story of modern day persecution of a pro-life Christian group that was unlawfully arrested and subjected to “strip searches” all because they held anti-abortion signs along public freeways. The ADF was able to get the following accomplished.

“Harford County and the state troopers formally acknowledged that the officers’ behavior was unconstitutional, and agreed to train officers about First Amendment and free-speech issues.”

We are told that persecution will increase. Is your faith strong enough to see you through mocking, verbal abuse, being called a hater or a bigot, beatings, arrest or more? It is easy to say “yes” from the privacy of a keyboard, but when put to the test, with threat of violence or death, is your faith strong enough to stand for Christ? Might you falter as Peter did?

Completely falling from Christ isn’t the only danger. Jesus tells us in Revelation 3:15-16

“I know all the things you do, that you are neither hot nor cold. I wish that you were one or the other! 3:16 But since you are like lukewarm water, neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth!”

I’ve never attended seminary, so maybe there is another meaning to this verse. To me, any time I have ever spit anything from my mouth is was because it disgusted me. If I breakdown the above verse to me “hot” would be of God, and “cold” of the world. If you are neither, maybe you are a mix of both.

For many years I walked with both feet in the world, then one foot in each. I have whittled away many of the things that cause me to sin. There are still so many areas that trip me up. It is a good thing we have a graceful and loving God!

Revelation 3:19-20 “I correct and discipline everyone I love. So be diligent and turn from your indifference. Look! I stand at the door and knock. If you hear my voice and open the door, I will come in, and we will share a meal together as friends.”

If you have areas of your life that cause you to be “lukewarm”, with one foot in the world, be it Internet sites you shouldn’t visit, TV you shouldn’t watch, magazines you shouldn’t be reading or relationships that are not biblical, it might be time to repent and press into the Lord. Let Him correct you and open the door for Him!

While we are individually responsible for our walk, we do not walk alone. One of the things that I am grateful to God for is how this community has formed. We share, encourage and pray for one another. If you have a verse that brings you encouragement or strength, feel free to post it. Do the same for any prayer requests.

 

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Two Preparedness Pearls from the New Testament

newtestament

During my daily devotional, a verse jumped off the page at me like it never has before. In Mathew 4:6 we see that Jesus is being tempted by the original Mr. Dirtbag; satan.

“If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down. For it is written: “He will command his angels concerning you, and they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.”

Christ’s rebuttal is what I saw in a new light, He tells Satan: “It is also written: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.”

When it comes to preparedness, how many times have you heard someone say “I have faith that the Lord will provide”? From now on, I think my response will be “if God’s own son wouldn’t put the Lord to the test, why would you?”

Jesus could have jumped off of the building and, I am sure satan was right, there would have been a swarm of angles to keep Christ from reaching the earth. But Jesus took personal responsibility and did not put the Lord thy God to the test.

Yes it is true that after doing spiritual warfare with satan, the angles came to attend to Jesus. But I think the message still stands; we are not to put God on the spot.

This same rebuttal could be used when it comes to self-defense, for those who say they’ll just look to God to protect them and will not use a firearm for self-defense.
 
 
The second pearl comes from “Bluebird” in a recent comment on the article “Christianity and the Bibles Case for Self-Defense”.

“Please don’t forget the story about the seven wise virgins, who prepared ahead of time in case the wait for the bridegroom was a long one. Even though they were prepared, they did not share with the virgins who did not prepare. They told them if they shared, neither of them would have enough. When Jesus told this story, there was no reprimand to the wise virgins for refusing to share with the foolish ones.”

I really like this point! I made a similar point in the article “Christian Hospitality and Preparedness”. I think that we are called to be hospitable and to give when the Lord calls us to. We are not, however, required to be a food bank to everyone who didn’t use their ears to hear or their eyes to see. There are many verses where the punishments are defined for not following the Word. In Proverbs 27:12 we’re told that those who do not prepare for danger will suffer for it. It is not our job to keep them from suffering. We are, however, called to be hospitable and called to be the hands and feet of our God when He asks us to be. We must pray for discernment to know the difference!

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Preparedness Lesson from the Bible on Anonymity

give in secret
Image taken from Van Allsblog

Mathew 6 1-4 NIV

“Be careful not to practice your righteousness in front of others to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven. So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full.

 But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.”

 

Granted, I think Jesus was trying to teach that when we give, we should do so quietly and not draw attention to it.  I think this is great advice every prepper should heed.  There are two points that I take away from those verses that I think relate to preparedness; “being gray” and “pat on the back”.

 

Being Gray

I have covered “being gray” in previous articles, so I’ll just touch on it now.  Being gray or maintaining OP-SEC (operational Security) is part keeping a low profile, part not letting others know what you have and part doing what is expected of you, so as not to raise undo attention.

Many people feel a need to share their preparations with those less fortunate.  That is their right.  I will side with the King and say “do so in private”, but probably for different reasons than He gave.  If you share either openly, not hiding it from anyone, or openly with the people you choose to assist, too many people know that you have preparations to share.

One thought I have is to share secretly, leaving care packages late at night on the doorsteps of people who are in need.  This way they get some assistance and OP-SEC is maintained.

 

Pat on the Back

Many of us like to do good things for others.  Let’s face it, being able to help someone in need and receiving their thanks feels good.  At Christmas time, I always make sure to have change on me so I can put some in every Salvation Army kettle I pass by.  I do this for a few reasons; one is that I know this is the time of year they make most of their operating money and I also do it so the bell ringer feels like their time is well spent.  If I’m truly honest, I also do it because it feels good to have the bell ringer acknowledge my putting something in the kettle, though I still donate if they’re on a break. 

My point is that if you feel like you must give publicly to others “when it hits the fan”, do some soul searching and find out why you’re giving.  Is it out of Christian obligation?  Is it just easier to give face to face?  Is it because seeing the joy on their face makes you feel good?

We can eliminate any potential sin issues and keep our OP-SEC by giving privately.  Our Father who sees what is done in secret will reward us.

 

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Christianity and the Bible’s Case for Self-Defense

Today we have a guest post, an author published by Prepper Press named John Elliot.  John writes about Christianity and self-defense.  This is a subject I covered a couple years ago, please see the comment section for my thoughts on John’s article, and on the subject in general.

 

Christianity and the Bible’s Case for Self-Defense

As the author of books having to do with self-preservation and, far more importantly, as a Christian, I have had to answer some rather deeply personal questions that require a considerable level of introspection. At the forefront of those questions is the one that asks, “What does God say about Believers protecting themselves from criminals, terrorists, or anyone else who may wish to harm us?”

Since my last book came out, Don’t Be A Victim!, I have been asked that question no less than six times. Well, part of the answer can be found in various books of the Bible. Was Moses condemned by God for going to the defense of a fellow Israelite and killing an Egyptian? The answer is no. In the book of Acts, chapter 7:24, it clearly demonstrates that the act of killing that Egyptian who was mistreating an Israelite was in fact part of Moses’ acceptance by the Israelites.

Nowhere in the Bible does it show that Christians are to be the doormats for the evil people of the world; but are we as Christians called upon to turn the other cheek? Well, yes. Matthew 5:39 instructs us about just that thing. There is even a time when Believers in Christ may have to suffer and die. We can read about that in Matthew5:11, Philippians 1:29, 2 Timothy 2:3, and in some other passages found in the Bible. All of that is true; there is no argument here at all.

What is also true is the Christian doctrine of self-defense and preservation, of preparedness and good common sense. The Apostle Paul implied that Christian men ought to defend their families. In 1 Timothy 5:8, after speaking about how the law applies to criminals and other violators of the trust God gives to men and women, it reads, “But those who won’t care for their relatives; especially those in their own household, have denied the true faith. Such people are worse than unbelievers.” We are told by those words, and so many other passages, that we as Christians have a right, a duty and an obligation to protect the innocent amongst us.

If you are lying in bed at night and you waken by the sound of breaking glass, what do you do? You dial 911 right away, but what happens if an intruder is then heard climbing the stairs to where your wife and children are sleeping? The police may be on their way, but they are still several minutes away. You are a Christian, you are told to love your enemy, but you also know that the burglar in your home is probably capable of unspeakable violence. What now? If you are like me, you reach for that Sig Sauer semi-automatic pistol, and before the burglar makes it to the top of the stairs, you send him off to meet his Maker.

We live in a violence-prone world, gone mad with horrible crime each day, with horrific acts of terrorism across the globe, with the knowledge that eventually we may all have to face our worst fears in life. Being a born-again Believer in Christ helps to relieve so much of that fear and anxiety, but being prepared for the unexpected is what God expects from each of us.

John Elliott is the author of Don’t Be A Victim!: An Officer’s Advice on Preventing Crime, published by Prepper Press. He is a law enforcement veteran who worked for police agencies in Virginia, Rhode Island and Florida, as well as for the U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Customs Service. He also spent many years working with Interpol, and was a bomb disposal technician conducting land mine and unexploded military ordnance disposal in the Middle East, Eastern Europe, Asia and North Africa.
 
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Christian Hospitality and Preparedness

CrossAndCrown

During a recent radio interview on The 21st Century Homekeeper Radio Program, a few of Sylvia’s listeners said they would like to know where a Christian should stand on providing for others when things have gone bad.  This is something I have touched on before, so I was familiar with the scriptures, and gave an answer based on my understanding of them.  After the interview something was gnawing at me about the questions and my answer, so I did a bit more digging and realized what I had failed to do.  I failed to take the scriptures into the context of the time and culture in which they were written. I’ve said before that context is king.  It can completely change the meaning of any ancient text.

I don’t know that I would say my answer in the interview was wrong, but maybe just not as good as it should have been.   In researching the context to get a better understanding of the scriptures, I had my mind changed, if only slightly, so I thought I would share with you my discovery.

 

Hospitality

The word hospitality in modern times, to me at least, makes one think of someone who welcomes you to their home and puts on a nice meal, then thanks you for coming as you leave that evening.  But in ancient times people had a different understanding of the word.  I found a book called “Entertaining Angels: Early Christian Hospitality in its Mediterranean Setting”.  I didn’t read the book, but was able to find large sections available on the university website where the author teaches,  as well as some critiques of it.

In one section on hospitality in the times of the New Testament the author says:

“Today we think of hospitality as the custom of feeding family, friends, and neighbors in our homes or hosting these people for a night or two. The writers of the New Testament, however, were working with a significantly different definition of hospitality or xenia. The ancient custom of hospitality revolved around the practice of welcoming strangers or travelers into one’s home while promising to provide them with provisions and protection.  Hospitality in the first century could be a very risky venture, just as taking strangers into one’s home is a dangerous decision in many corners of the world today. Nevertheless, in the books of Luke and Acts we see an appeal for Jesus’ disciples to practice hospitality in their lives and ministries.”

In one critique I read, we are given a better idea of what hospitality looked like in Greco-Roman, Jewish and early Christian cultures.  The other two are worth reading as they did have influence on the early Christian church.  I don’t want to copy and paste it all, so here is the Christian section:

“Because all the first Christians were Jews, and the next round primarily Greeks or Romans, it causes no surprise to see most of the elements surveyed already recurring in early Christianity. Particularly important was the practice of extending hospitality to traveling missionaries- a boon to the recipients in a world without consistently safe, wholesome forms of public lodging but potentially a drain on the church’s resources, especially when itinerants overstayed their welcome. Without this background, it remains harder to understand Paul’s recurring requests for hospitality for himself and his representative or to make sense of Didache’s criterion of length of stay by a visitor for determining if he or she was a true or false prophet! A rereading of John 4 on the assumption that Jesus was asking for hospitality from the Samaritan woman discloses several new insights not regularly rehearsed in the standard expositions. The same may be said on a smaller scale of 2 John, while Matt 10:14 and 42, like Matt 25:31-46, make more sense once it is recognized that “the host’s extension of hospitality to a traveling teacher was an indication that the host accepted or agreed with the teaching of the traveling teacher” (123). By the third century, however, Christian practice underwent a dramatic shift as hospitality was placed under the authority of bishops and hospitality “morphed” into a charitable service performed by entire congregations and supported by treasuries of funds to which they donated.”

Hospitality amongst Christians has always been a way for us to share Christ’s love, but over the centuries, how we show hospitality has changed.  At least in the USA hospitality is often similar to how is was practiced in the third century.  Tithes and offerings are used to launch and support ministries and missionaries abroad.
BibleScripture

There are far more scriptures on hospitality than I can list and expect you to read this entire article, so I will post a few that I think are relevant.   A point to keep in mind is that these scriptures were meant to be lived by every day.  They aren’t instructions for what is acceptable to Christ when faced with prolonged hardship.

 

1 Peter 4:9

“Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling.”

 

Romans 12:13

“Share with God’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.”

 

Proverbs 31:20

“She opens her arms to the poor and extends her hands to the needy.”

 

Matthew 25:40

The King will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.

 

Hebrews 13:2

“Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unaware.”

 

Hebrews 13:1-2

“Let mutual love continue. Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by doing that some have entertained angels without knowing it”

 

Luke 11:5-8

Then Jesus said to them, “Suppose you have a friend, and you go to him at midnight and say, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread; a friend of mine on a journey has come to me, and I have no food to offer him.’ And suppose the one inside answers, ‘Don’t bother me. The door is already locked, and my children and I are in bed. I can’t get up and give you anything.’ I tell you, even though he will not get up and give you the bread because of friendship, yet because of your shameless audacity[a] he will surely get up and give you as much as you need.”

I must say that I have a lot to learn in terms of hospitality.  If you come yelling and knocking on my door in the middle of the night, you’ll find yourself on the business end of Christopher.  But I digress.  This verse isn’t really about hospitality; Jesus had just delivered the Lord’s Prayer, and is showing the Disciples how to pray and seek our loving Father.  I list it as I think this is one verse where, taken out of context, someone could say we should do whatever is necessary to be hospitable.

One of the resources I used lists many scriptures on hospitality , from both the Old and New Testaments.  I found there are four main types of verses on hospitality; hospitality to complete strangers, hospitality to people in need, hospitality as a character trait and hospitality to brothers and sisters in the faith.  The most common type I found is hospitality toward others in the faith.

 

Preparedness

Does this then mean that we do not need to show generosity or hospitality when times are hard?  No, not at all!  There are, after all, verses on helping those in need.  In my mind that is both for the every day and for when times are hard.

Because the Bible doesn’t speak on how to act in a survival situation we have to look at other scriptures and see if we can draw any conclusions.   Of course the scriptures on how to act every day still apply, but what other wisdom on the subject can we glean from the Word of God?

1 Timothy 5:8 says: “If anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for his immediate family, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.”

That verse goes for everyone, so does Proverbs 27:12, which states:

“A prudent person foresees the danger ahead and takes precautions. The simpleton goes blindly on and suffers the consequences.”

I bring these two verses up because we tend to see one side of the coin.  We see that if we don’t want to be seen as worse than an unbeliever, we must meet our family’s needs.  We see that if we want to be wise, we must prepare to mitigate dangers.  We, however, might not give a lot of thought to those who don’t meet their family’s needs, or who didn’t see danger because they either weren’t looking, or saw it and decided not to do anything.

Let’s think about those people for a minute.  Do you think God is following them around with a pillow to protect them from hitting the hard ground?  I don’t!  I think God makes it perfectly clear that there are rewards and consequences. Those individuals weren’t motivated by prudence for meeting their family’s needs in good and bad times.  The consequences are clear to me.

I think modern American Christianity has gone too far building “our buddy Jesus”, and forgotten that, while He is loving, He is also fierce and to be feared.  There are more examples than I can count in the Bible of God giving people a choice.  When they chose to not follow His way, being turned to a pillar of salt, being forced to wander the desert for another forty years, being conquered by other nations and being led into slavery.

Some might say that all of those are Old Testament references.  While true, they are no less relevant.  Also, before Christ was born human, the only way to have sins redeemed was through human actions; by following God’s Law, and by making sacrifices.  After Jesus dies on the cross, the gift of salvation is available to anyone; choose it and you will be rewarded with eternity in His presence.  If you opt out of salvation, it puts you outside of His presence, paying for your sins for eternity.

When the question is asked if we’ll help those in need after it has hit the fan, I have seen many Prepper’s answer that they would help where they can but that they will not help those who come with their hand out and are not willing to help.  In light of my current research, what do I think about that type of response?  I think for the most part it’s a perfectly fine answer for a Christian to give.

Some might call me selfish for such an answer.  To them I say this: I am prepared to meet the needs of my family and will help where I am led and am able.  To me it sounds more selfish for someone who didn’t prepare to meet the needs of their family showing up uninvited, with their hand out, expecting to be fed, clothed and protected, all for the sheer act of drawing breath.

However, if you are someone who feels you must prepare to take care of others in times of great need, I have a solution!  God only asks we give Him ten percent.  I do not believe He would ask us to give to others more than He asks for Himself.  So set aside ten percent of your preparations for others.  This doesn’t have to be expensive food.  It can be made up of staples; rice, beans, popcorn seeds, sugar and on and on.  This would mean that if you have a year’s food stored for your family, you would either have another (roughly) month and a half stored to give away, or give away a month and a half leaving your family with ten and a half months’ worth of food.

 

Summary

John 13:34-35 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35 By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”

Christ commanded us to love one another.  Hospitality is one way to do this.  We are also called to be the light of the world, which I covered in Why Should Christians, Specifically, Be Preparing?. We are also to help those in need, to be His hands and feet.  We, however, are not called to be someone’s emergency parachute.  Their lack of planning does not constitute your emergency.

I think this is one area that each of us must ask our loving Father for wisdom and guidance in how to act and how to prepare to be His hands and Feet.

I said I had my mind changed, if only slightly.  Currently Trudee and I support a few different ministries.  We feel blessed that God has allowed us the ability to help others in need; to be His hands and feet.  Before, I would have said that if things “hit the fan”, we would help others if/when we felt led.  After my research on hospitality, I say that if we feel blessed to be His hands and feet now, there will be so many more opportunities when “it hits the fan”.  We will still help if/when we are led, but I see it more of an opportunity to be used by God, than a Christian duty.

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t feel like we need to help everyone, especially those who might take advantage.  This goes for friends and family as well as strangers.

God is loving and, at times, meets the needs of someone in an emergency. He also loves us enough to give us free will and to let us face difficult consequences for poor choices, so that we may learn from them.  We should follow His example, as we are made in His image.

 

Closing

I want to close with an excerpt from “Entertaining Angels: Early Christian Hospitality in its Mediterranean Setting”

“These Lukan hospitality texts remain relevant for Christians today. Even more than in the ancient world, we encounter travelers and strangers from vastly different regions and cultures. Some are traveling by choice (e.g., students and immigrants), while others travel by necessity (e.g., evacuees from natural disasters and refugees from war-torn regions). In Luke’s writings, we hear a call to extend hospitality to these strangers in creative ways.

With the early Christians we should take wise steps to guard against those who might abuse generous hosts (Didache 11-12), but we may not neglect the Christian ministry of hospitality. As Jesus’ disciples, we should proactively seek to extend protection and provisions to strangers. As we do this, we may encounter God’s presence in the midst of our hospitality. We may well “entertain angels without knowing it.”

 

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Interviewed by Sylvia Britton of The 21st Century Homekeeper

As I mentioned recently I was asked to do a couple radio interviews. The first of which was recorded last Thursday and will air Sat, February 23, 2013 05:00 pm CST. A word of warning for those who might listen, I was incredibly nervous and may have passed out for a second here and there. All kidding aside I think I did OK for my first radio interview, thank you so much to Sylvia The Christian Homekeeper for the opportunity. Also thank you all who prayed for me and had words of encouragement.

Prepared Christian Interview

When Spouses Don’t Agree on Preparedness

In 2 Corinthians 6:14, the word of God tells us not to be unequally yoked with an unbeliever.  We’re asked, “For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness?”   I think part of the concern is that the believer might have their light dimmed and be drawn closer to the world.

I think this verse is good advice and can be applied to other areas of life.  Since my name isn’t Dr. Phil, I’ll stick to preparedness.  In my thinking, this has two applications for us Prepper’s.  The first is, “what to do if your spouse doesn’t see the need for prepping?” and the other is, “what if they are a prepper, but think there should be a different level of preparedness?”

 

Your Spouse Doesn’t See a Need to Prepare

This is the more difficult of the two areas but it isn’t impossible to either win them over or at least move them to a point where they’re not an immovable obstacle.

In sales, when you have a customer who has objections to making a purchase, you’re taught to define their objectives and address them to alleviate their fear.  Just remember, you’re not trying to sell them something.  You’re asking the person you chose to marry why they are concerned about an issue you think is important.

The objection to prepping is often an emotional one, so tread carefully. Don’t dismiss fears or concerns, as you will just make them dig their heels in further.  No one likes to have their fear belittled, but when someone uses logic and concern to shine a light on the fear, one can sometimes realize that their fear is unfounded.

As I mentioned, the objection to prepping is often an emotional one.  The first objections given might not actually be the biggest fear or concern.  They might not have actually thought it out to know why they are against the idea.  Like pealing an onion, you might have to carefully remove layer after layer to get to the heart of the objection.

I wrote an article some time ago called “Some of the reasons people don’t prepare”.  It covers many of the objections I have seen since I started prepping.  It also lists some logical rebuttal’s you can use to help alleviate their concerns and fears.

If you and your spouse are both followers of Christ, I think it is a bit easier to make your argument.  If you truly believe that God is calling you to prepare, explain that to them.  You’ll still need to address their fears and concerns.  I covered some of the concerns Trudee and I had in Is Preparedness A Sin?.  I also explored all of the scripture related to preparedness in Scripture Related To Preparedness..  I think the eBook I wrote, which is given as a gift for subscribing for updates, can also be a great way to approach this subject.

I approach circumstances where Trudee and I might be on opposite sides of an issue a couple of different ways.  We pray together and ask for God’s wisdom, for clarity and guidance to know what to do.  I then privately ask God to make her do things my way.  I’m just kidding!  I ask that if she is aligned with His will to help me see things her way, and if I am aligned with His will for her to see things my way.  I think a lot of times, if we submit a decision to Him, putting “our way” aside, He will make His will known.  We might not always like the answer though.

When you do this, you have to be willing to let go of what you think is right.  Don’t pray it while in the back of your mind thinking that God knows you’re right and He’ll side with you.  That might be the case, but the Almighty God of the universe is not your tough guy, there to bend people to your will.  The idea is to submit to God and to honor your spouse while praying for Godly wisdom.

I think you also need to define what it is you want to do.  Telling someone that you want to prepare for some undefined event may be hard for someone new to the concept of preparedness to wrap their mind around.  If you say that you would like to have a way to provide for your family’s five basic human needs, and explain what they are, that is something they can more easily understand.

 

Your Spouse is a Prepper, But Not on the Same Page

Whether your spouse thinks you should be prepping more or less, you should first thank God that they see the need at all.  From there you can approach this issue the same way outlined above; discover why they think the way they do, and explain why you think the way you do.  Pray about it as mentioned above and ask for guidance.

There are a couple of different ways you can evaluate your current level of preparedness, to see where your holes are.  Start off with Proverbs 27:12:

“The prudent see danger and take refuge, but the simple keep going and suffer for it.”

Start by defining what you both believe the dangers are.  You might be surprised to hear of one that you didn’t realize was a concern.  For instance, if the stuff hits the fan and you work close to home but your spouse works further away, you might have their trip home as a concern but a low priority.  That’s not to say you don’t care, but you might think they’ll be able to get home without much difficulty.  They make that drive every day and can see what the obstacles are or might be.  This might be a much higher concern for them.  I know that when I worked at the office, one of my biggest concerns was getting home if something big happened.

It might be a good idea to agree to have this conversation in a week, which would give you both enough time to build your case.  I would suggest you find rational examples of why something is a concern for you.  If I were to go to Trudee and say I want to buy a generator because there could be a solar flare and we will need to supply our own power, I haven’t built my best case.  Instead, if I tell her that we know of people who have lost power every winter, that we also have the potential for some other less likely but still possible things, and give examples of hackers from other countries hacking the electric grid, the blackouts on the east coast and even the less likely EMP or solar flare, I’ve made a much stronger case.

Now you can create a list of the things you both think are the biggest dangers and figure out how to “take refuge” so to speak.

What do you do if one see’s something as danger that the other does not?  For example, if Trudee has a concern that a fire breaking out is a large concern and I don’t.  I can logically see that it is a risk, but I might think our actual risk is very low.  For the sake of honoring my wife, I think I should make a concession and do what is reasonable to take refuge for her perceived danger.  I say “reasonable” because spending some cash on nice fire alarms and some fire extinguishers, as well as spending some time on making evacuation routes and plans is reasonable.  Building a concrete house and only cooking outside are not.

Once you have listed the dangers, look at them and decide how to meet your families five basic needs.  Much of this will be overlap, with some exceptions.  Food storage will meet the need for food for any of the dangers, but we might have to get a fire extinguisher to meet the one specific need.

Another sticking point might be the capacity to which you prepare.  Let’s say I think we should have six months of food stored and Trudee thinks three months is sufficient.  Maybe we could compromise and meet at 4.5 months’ worth.

The amount of supplies needed to meet your food and water needs can be measured by how long you want them to last.  The rule of thumb is to have one gallon of water per person for each day.  You might have easy access to water and decide to purchase a means to prepare it, storing less.  For food, you eat at least three meals a day.  For security, shelter and energy, the level of preparedness is harder to judge and can be open to interpretation.

If one of you is a planner and wants to have more plans on what to do if certain things happen, it might be reasonable for the person who isn’t as much of a planner to give in.  Now, if one wants to spend a large sum of money, then that is something you should agree on.

Another way to see where actual holes are in your preparations and plans is to run drills.  Turn the power off over a weekend or really test it and go longer.  You may find that you really don’t need as much of something as you thought, or you could see you need more.

I have gotten a few emails from people who have thanked me for giving them a rational Godly based way to explain preparedness, getting their spouse “on board” with it.  I don’t take credit for it.  I believe I am just doing what God asked me to do.

I also know that there are certain things that no matter how many different ways you explain it, no matter how well thought out, how logical or rational you are, there are just certain things your spouse won’t “hear” you on.  Sometimes it just takes someone on the outside.  Never make them feel like you’re pushing it down their throat.

 

What to do if They Won’t Budge?

If you can’t agree and they either fail to see the reason to prepare, or to be as prepared as you, I won’t tell you what you should do, other than pray for guidance.  If Trudee wouldn’t have been on board, I would have told her that I loved her and that her opinion did matter to me, but that I believed the Lord wanted me to begin to prepare and that I was going to.  I would’ve assured her that I wasn’t going to go overboard, but I would be spending a little money here and there.  I wouldn’t have rubbed it in, but I would have done as I felt led by the Lord.

 

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