Saturday, February 4, 2012

Be Prepared!

There's been an approaching storm warning out all day. The weather has been unseasonable for weeks. Forecasters are predicting one of the worse storms in a generation but you've been so busy you haven't heard. You're headed home in a hard wind and darkening skies attempting to beat the spouse and kids home at the end of the day when you turn on the radio and hear there's a tornado warning issued for your county. That two twisters have touched down, one near your kids' school. The sky turns black and a sudden hail begins to pelt your car. You pull over and reach for your smart phone to see there is no signal. The hail's getting worse. The wind's getting worse. What do you do? WHAT DO YOU DO?!


Most folks don't think through scenarios such as this. And as such gives fear an opportunity to seize on the situation if and when it happens. Fear is believing in reverse. Fear is negative believing.  Which brings negative results. In a crisis situation there is no room for fear if one is to navigate one's way through the crisis successfully. You've heard of cases of people being caught unprepared for an unexpected disaster. You hear it on the news all the time! "I never thought something like this could happen here", they cry. Why would someone think like that?! Just because they live there?! Being unprepared is slothfulness. It's lazy. With potentially devastating results. Therefore, preparedness is called for in order to face any  bad situation. And with all the resources available today, (See "Related Links" below) there really is no excuse to be caught off guard and putting yourself... or worse yet, those that depend on you... into a situation where you would have to rely on others. Or perish. My recommendation? Be prepared! Not that I'm a Boy Scout but we could all learn something from their motto!


Remember Y2K? Unless you were too young to remember the bringing in a new millennium aka Y2K, well... how could you forget?! It generated buzz all over the world causing many to fear the worse. Fear based on the short-sightedness and/or greed of the first software companies. "During 1960s to late 80s there was a widespread practice in all computer softwares to use two digits for representing a year rather than using 4 digits. This was done to save computer disk and memory space because these resources were relatively expensive in those times. As the year 90's approached experts began to realize this major shortcoming in the computer application softwares. In year 2000, the computer systems could interpret 00 as 1900 messing up all the computing work. For example if a program function is calculating difference between two dates, it would calculate a negative number. For example difference between 1 Jan 2000 and 31 Dec 1999 could be calculated as -100 years rather than 1 day. This was a major bug for the whole finance industry. The bug not only existed in computer software but it also existed in the firmware being used in the computer hardware. In general this bug threatened all the major industries including utilities, banking, manufacturing, telecom, airlines." -from Y2KTimeBomb.com This potential catastrophe was averted after American business and government spent over $100 billion to fix it. The American and 11 other European countries total was $494 billion. A fine example of not doing things right the first time to cut costs, pass it on to others decades later and force them to fix it at a lot more cost than if they would'a paid to do it right the first time! Excuse that rattlin' sound but I just hafta shake my head at foolishness such as this!


 Many of us were encouraged to be prepared for Y2K. Self-reliant types prepared for the worse. Stocking extra food, water, medical and other supplies and developed family contingency plans. Just in case the millennium bug didn't get fixed. But it did. Everything pretty much became "Y2K compliant" before the end of the year and the new year came in without the world descending into a nuclear firestorm. Those of us there were prepared were scoffed by some. And that's alright. It did generate some fun commercials however. My favorite being the Nike runner going for a jog on January 1, 2000. Remember it?!


Was I prepared? As much as my then-current situation would allow me to be. Being a husband and father to a still young family, I took this perceived threat serious enough to prepare for about 3 weeks of a complete, total shutdown of services. I really didn't think things would get as terrible as that commercial shows but we, meaning my family... the ones that depended on me... were prepared for any short term inconveniences. I was also prepared the best I could be mentally and physically if it all came to anarchy. There was concern yes. But because of the time put into planning, practicing, communicating and organizing, fear no. Preparing for the Y2K bug taught me a few things. Namely, one should always be as prepared as possible for any situation where services may be disrupted. There are so many possible scenarios to prepare for just thinking that through could be discouraging but when it comes to basic needs? Depending on your situation, to be prepared remains rather simple. Check out this story's "Recommended Video" for details.


Campers already have a head start on "Be Prepared." Anyone that's been camping a time or two can tell ya... The more prepared you are, the more enjoyable the experience. Camping really is a good exercise for all involved in getting your daily need taken care of on a daily basis away from the conveniences of home. Use it to build communication in the family or group. The camping gear itself is a lot of your emergency gear. From tent camping to pop-up campers to RVs, you should have the necessary unperishable equipment for cooking, lighting, heating, hygiene and first aid. After that, a reserve of food, water, batteries, fuel, prescriptions and pet care items should be stocked separately from weekly supplies but should be rotated into your consumable inventory on a regular basis and refreshed as needed. The first aid kit should be inventoried and refreshed at least annually. Stock items according to your and your family's needs. Have a container or two of necessary items and documents packed and ready to go in case evacuation is mandatory. It may save you valuable time if and when you and yours have to make a run for it.


With all the uncertainty we face in this life, whether it's the weather, the economy, technology, international politics, cosmic debris or the Earth itself... if and when the situation deteriorates? That ain't the time to get ready for it! Many people and pets will endure hard times and/or die off for lack of being prepared. But that ain't gotta be us! As Biblical students know from God's Word on "Be Prepared!"... to quote Matthew 24:43... But know ye this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch (what time) the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up. And I Thessalonians 5:2 - 9, For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. For when they shall say, "Peace and safety;" then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape. But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief. We are all the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness. Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober. For they that sleep sleep in the night: and they that be drunken are drunken in the night. But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation. For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ...   Yes this is talking about a future event. It will be disasterous for most. Why? Because they will not be prepared. They won't even see it coming! God's Household of the time will not suffer "sudden destruction" because (say it with me now!) They Be Prepared! It's not God's will anyone should suffer destruction of life and/or property. But we live in a world where we are continuously confronted by evil. If God's Word encourages His people to be prepared, what better witness can His people give than to rise to every challenge?! We should not only endure if faced with the challenges in this life but with sound, practical preparation the enduring will be much more endurable! If not down right victorious!

Recommended Video      Disaster Preparedness 3:10  


How To Assemble A Disaster Preparedness Kit 1:24 - FEMA
Related Links
Y2K - Cisco
Ready - FEMA
Disaster Prepped
Disaster Checklist - National Science Foundation
The God Of This World
Hurricane Preparedness - NOOA
Public Health Emergency - U.S. Dept. Of Human Health And Services
Emergency Evacuation Checklist
Are You Prepared For A Disaster? - Sodahead Question
How To Survive A Foreign Invasion

- Check Out These Items & More In Rocky's Trading Stump / Preppers Gear -

                       

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